Wild chase ends in Bell County

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BELL COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ) — A wild chase from Claiborne County in Tennessee across the state line into Bell County in Kentucky ended when a Middlesboro Police officer was able to pin the fleeing car against a guardrail along Highway 25E.

But the driver, 34-year-old Christopher Powell, of New Tazewell, Tenn., wasn’t caught until after he jumped and ran, tumbled down a steep embankment, and fought with officers.

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He faces a long list of charges.

According to the Middlesborough Police Department, the chase started when Tennessee authorities reported a chase involving a possible kidnapping suspect driving a stolen car.

Middlesborough officers and Cumberland Gap Park Rangers spotted the car northbound on Highway 25E, where the driver swerved at the officers and continued toward Pineville, police said in a release.

As Kentucky State Police joined the pursuit, the driver, later identified as Powell, swerved in and out of traffic in both lanes, forcing other cars off the road. Finally a Middlesborough officer was able to get in a position to foerce the car into the guardrail, according to the release.

That’s when Powell, who turned out to be the only person in the car, tried to escape. Once finally restrained, he as taken to Pineville Community Hospital for treatment.

He was booked into the Bell County Detention Center just before 6 a.m. Thursday.

He is charged with everything from speeding, disorderly conduct, driving under the influence and receiving stolen property to wanton endangerment, fleeing, and five counts of assault on an officer.