Pursuit results in felony charges for Burns Harbor man

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(Photo supplied/Indiana State Police)

A high-speed chase reaching triple digits led to a drug-related arrest along I-80/94 in northwestern Indiana.

It was around 2:45 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 6, when an Indiana State Police trooper was patrolling along I-80/94 near Cline Avenue and saw a tan vehicle traveling eastbound at a at around 90 m.p.h. in the 55 m.p.h. zone.

When the trooper tried to make a traffic stop, the vehicle began to weave side to side, then accelerated to over 100 m.p.h. A pursuit was initiated and the driver pulled onto the shoulder, decreased the vehicle’s speed dramatically as if he was pulling over and then quickly sped off again.

The driver eventually stopped east of Grant St. and was taken into custody.

During the apprehension, the trooper detected the strong odor of alcoholic beverages on the driver’s breath. The driver was offered field sobriety tests as well as a certified test for intoxication, but he refused all the tests. A warrant was requested through the Lake County Prosecutor’s Office, and it was subsequently granted by a Lake County Superior Judge. The blood draw was completed at a local hospital.

During the investigation, illegal drugs and contraband were located inside the vehicle. The driver, Johnny J. Svejda, 68, of Burns Harbor, was taken to the Lake County Jail on preliminary charges of:

Resisting Law Enforcement with a Vehicle- Level 6 Felony
Possession of Cocaine or Narcotic Drug- Level 6 Felony
Possession of Hypodermic Needle or Syringe- Level 6 Felony
Operating While Intoxicated Endangering- Class A Misdemeanor
Operating While Intoxicated- Class C Misdemeanor
Possession of Marijuana- Class B Misdemeanor
Possession of Paraphernalia- Class B Misdemeanor

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