Indiana State Police say Master Trooper Mike Hemphill’s traffic stop on US 30 in Starke County Thursday afternoon turned into a chase down US 30 after the suspect fled, a chase that ended miles away near Hobart. Troopers say radar showed the 28-year-old Loves Park, Illinois, man was going 90-miles an hour in a posted 60-mile-per-hour zone. During the pursuit that followed, at one point going west on the eastbound side for about a mile, police say stop sticks were thrown out multiple times before the suspect vehicle struck hit them approaching State Road 49.
Trooper Hemphill stopped his pursuit due to the amount of fully marked police cars that had joined the chase – his being an unmarked car – and traffic. Porter County Sheriff Deputies arrested the suspect after his station wagon broke down at U.S. 30 and State Road 51 in Lake County.
The man is facing charges of Possession of Paraphernalia and Resisting Law Enforcement in Porter County, and Indiana State Police charges in Starke, LaPorte and Lake Counties are pending. Valparaiso Police also assisted.
[Photo provided by Indiana State Police/Porter County Sheriffs Department]
Here's the full news release:
Starke County-Master Trooper Mike Hemphill’s traffic stop turned into a chase when a driver took off after being stopped for a traffic violation.
Early this afternoon, at approximately 12:45 p.m., Trooper Hemphill was east on U.S. 35 when he saw a 1995 Mitsubishi station wagon going west on U.S. 30 in Starke County at a high rate of speed. He was able to get the Mitsubishi on radar at 90 M.P.H. in a well posted 60 M.P.H. zone.
When he pulled the vehicle over the driver, later identified as Michael J. Ostrowski, 28 of Loves Park, Illinois, stated he had no driver’s license or identification on him. He was able to produce a registration but stated he was not the owner of the vehicle but identifying information that was written on the back of it was him. During this exchange Hemphill noticed Ostrowski had a wallet lying in his lap. As Hemphill was walking back to his police car he noticed Ostrowski throw something out the passenger window. When he retrieved the article Ostrowski denied throwing it out. Hemphill then asked to see his wallet and Ostrowski gave it to him. It was then that Hemphill found an Illinois identification card with Ostrowski name and picture on it. Even with this ID card in hand Ostrowski still denied it was him. Ostrowski then fled in his Mitsubishi.
A LaPorte County Deputy threw out stop sticks about a mile east of US 421 which Ostrowski evaded. As Ostrowski entered Porter County stop sticks were thrown out again near 450 E; to evade them Ostrowski went through the median and went westbound in the eastbound lanes of U.S. 30 for approximately a mile before crossing back onto west bound U.S. 30. At this time Porter County Sheriff Deputies and Valparaiso Police had shut down traffic in this area. As the Mitsubishi approached State Road 49 it did hit stop sticks but continued west on U.S. 30.
Hemphill decided to stop his pursuit of the Mitsubishi at this time due to the amount of fully marked police cars that had joined the chase (Hemphill is in an unmarked police car) and traffic.
Porter County Sheriff Deputies were able to keep sight of Ostrowski when his Mitsubishi station wagon finally broke down and arrested him at U.S. 30 and State Road 51 in Lake County.
Ostrowski was transported and incarcerated at Porter County Jail where Porter County Sheriff Department has charged him with Possession of Paraphernalia and Resisting Law Enforcement.
Indiana State Police charges in Starke, LaPorte and Lake Counties are pending.
Agencies assisting: LaPorte County Sheriff Department, Porter County Sheriff Department, Valparaiso Police Department and Indiana State Police Detective Jennifer Richmond