GOSHEN — An Elkhart man is in police custody after leading officers on a chase from Ligonier to Goshen early Sunday morning, March 24.
At approximately 5:05 a.m., Goshen Police were notified that the pursuit of a white Ford Expedition was about to enter Goshen city limits following a reported theft of fuel.
According to a release from the Goshen Police Department, the vehicle entered Goshen from the south on U.S. 33, refusing to stop or slow the vehicle as officers followed.
The driver, later identified as Abraham Villegas, 21, attempted to crash head-on into police cars at U.S. 33 and Keystone Drive and again at U.S. 33 and Dierdorff Road. The driver attempted a third head-on collision with oncoming traffic, forcing another driver out of her lane.
Villegas lost control of the vehicle while approaching U.S. 33 and 10th Street, according to police. The vehicle flipped multiple times, sheared off a utility pole and came to a rest after crashing into Taqueria San Jose.
The business suffered extensive damage, though the cost of the damages is unknown at this time.
Villegas and rear passenger of the vehicle fled the scene on foot, according to police.
The front-seat passenger, a 15 year old female, suffered a major, but non-life threatening injury to her right knee. She was taken to IU Health Goshen Hospital for treatment of her injuries.
The rear passenger, a 14-year-old male, was found at the intersection of Sixth Street and Lincoln Avenue. He was also taken to IU Health Goshen for treatment of minor cuts.
Villegas, reportedly of Elkhart, was found in the 300 block of South 10th Street. He was taken to IU Health Goshen for minor cuts to his head and released into police custody. Villegas is now in the Elkhart County Jail.
The vehicle Villegas was driving is owned by Sonya Hughes of Elkhart, who is also the mother of the 14-year-old passenger.
The vehicle was reportedly stolen from Elkhart sometime Saturday night, March 23. The 14-year-old had also been reported as a runaway and had a warrant for his arrest on battery charges throughout Elkhart County.
Villegas was charged with four counts of criminal recklessness, leaving the scene of a personal injury accident and resisting law enforcement – fleeing. Villegas is also being held for an Elkhart County warrant.
Editor's note: The date of the event was wrong in the first version of this.