High speed pursuit - deputies successfully apprehend suspect

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St. Clair, Mo. - Yesterday evening, around 9:30 p.m., a Franklin County Deputy was working tracking enforcement on Highway 30 in the area of the Meramec River.  The deputy noticed a passing vehicle that had invalid license plates.

The deputy attempted to make a traffic stop; the passenger vehicle then fled, traveling from Highway 30 onto Pond Ford Road.  The deputy continued pursuing the vehicle.  While the deputy continued chasing the vehicle, the driver attempted to turn around in the roadway.  While doing so the vehicle smashed into the patrol car.

The vehicle spun around, traveling eastbound on Highway 30 at a high rate of speed. Other deputies set up road spikes at the intersection of Highway 30 and Hwy 47; however, the suspect turned onto Hwy 47 south, missing the road spikes.

The suspect continued on Highway 47, slowing down to speeds between 10 to 45 mph.  The suspect continued to flee, driving on both sides of the roadway.

Fearing for the safety of the oncoming traffic, the pursuing deputy was authorized to conduct a pit maneuver with his patrol car to end the pursuit. The deputy was successful, and caused the suspect’s vehicle to spin and come to rest in the roadway.

The suspect, Panfilo John Martinez, was taken into custody without further incident. He is a 20 year old, Hispanic male, formally of Desoto and Sullivan. Martinez has active felony warrants for Receiving Stolen Property out of Franklin County with a $15,000 dollar bond. He had further active warrants out of Crawford County for Property Damage and Domestic Assault with a $500 dollar bond.

Inside the vehicle, deputies located components commonly used to manufacture methamphetamine, two loaded handguns, cash, and a significant amount of an unknown powder believed to be crushed ephedrine pills.

The suspect was ultimately transported to the Franklin County Adult Detention Center, where he is being held on the active warrants as well as pending formal charges from yesterday’s pursuit.