CLEARWATER — Police arrested a man wanted on seven felony warrants who tried to run down several police officers as he took off in his vehicle and led pursuers on an 80 mph chase, authorities said.
Clearwater police received tips from a bail bondsman that Kevin Patterson, 32, of 2518 40th Ave. N, St. Petersburg, was in a specific location Thursday night. About 10 p.m., officers arrived in the 1600 block of Ewing Avenue, near the intersection of Belleair Road and S Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue.
There, they found Patterson and the bondsman struggling and tried to intervene, according to arrest reports.
But Patterson jumped into a 2011 Nissan Maxima rental car and sped off, nearly striking at least four officers, some of whom had to dive out of the way to avoid being hit, reports said.
Police pursued Patterson as he turned off his lights and fled at speeds up to 80 mph into Largo. Officers lost sight of the Maxima, but soon found it crashed into a pole near Largo Medical Center on Indian Rocks Road.
Patterson ran from the vehicle and was captured by a police canine unit near 3771 Sunset Circle, where he was being held by a resident, police said.
No officers were injured in the incident. Police say they found a large amount of crack cocaine inside the car.
Patterson was charged with four counts of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, aggravated fleeing and eluding, leaving the scene of an accident involving property damage, reckless driving, driving with a suspended license, seven felony warrants and possession of cocaine with intent to sell.
Patterson has previous convictions on aggravated fleeing and eluding and sale and possession of cocaine, according to the Florida Department of Corrections. On Friday afternoon, he was being held without bail in the Pinellas County Jail.