Police chased the car out of the city on a looping route, passing though Staunton Township and into Lostcreek Township, before entering Fletcher and heading south on state Route 589. As they did, police prepared to deploy stop sticks, but they didn’t end up being used.
Meanwhile, the car was reported stolen, and police were able to confirm that this was the same vehicle.
Kilbourne said that the pursuing officer described the car driving off the road near East Loy Road, driving through a cornfield and coming to a stop near the trees around Lost Creek. The occupants then jumped out and fled on foot into the woods.
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Police followed, catching Brown in a field, and finding Zeller hiding under a log in the woods with the help of a K9 unit and a Miami County Sheriff’s deputy operating a drone, Burnside said.
Officer Kilbourne said that police stayed in the area for some time afterward because they believed there had been a third person in the vehicle. Police were especially concerned for this person due to the cold weather, and because they found a pair of pants and shoes that were discarded.
Around 8 hours later, police received a report that a woman was knocking on doors asking for help near where the chase had ended. When they responded, they found O’Neil, who had been the one to discard the pants and shoes. She was wearing leggings when found by police.
O’Neil matched the description of the third person in the car, and after investigation police found that she had been hiding in a barn for those 8 hours.
Sgt. Burnside said that all three were charged with obstructing official business.
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Brown had warrants for his arrest on drug charges and for not attending a sentencing hearing on a drug case in Miami County. He was also given preliminary charges for several further drug charges, including possession of a fentanyl-related compound and LSD.
Zeller received charges for receiving stolen property, while O’Neil was charged with possessing schedule 1 or 2 drugs and drug paraphernalia. Burnside said that the warrants for both women were issued by Montgomery County, but it is unknown what those warrants were for.
Sgt. Burnside thanked the Miami County Sheriff’s Office for its assistance, calling it “instrumental” to the arrests, and added that members of the Troy Police Department were currently working on certification to operate their own police drone.
Brown, Zeller and O’Neil were booked in the Miami County Jail at time of writing.
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