SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – A police chase through multiple counties, where a man was driving a stolen car with an infant in tow, ended in a crash in Citrus County Tuesday afternoon.
A Florida Highway Patrol trooper conducted a traffic stop on Interstate-75, near the 329 mile marker in Sumter County for seatbelt and faulty equipment violations.
During the stop, the driver, Dillon Martin, 23, of Floral City, was taken into custody for driving with a suspended license and drug violations.
The passenger of the vehicle, Douglas Martin, 27, also of Floral City, allegedly fled from the stop on foot.
Martin was later observed by a Sumter Sheriff’s Deputy carjacking another vehicle along I-75 from a woman who had her baby in the car.
Marin knew the woman he stole the car from, because he called her for help.
It was his own mother. The 4-month old in the backseat was his nephew.
“The person who had fled the initial traffic stop pulled the driver out of the vehicle, got in the vehicle and sped off with her child, a four-month-old, what we believe, a four-month-old infant inside the vehicle” said Sgt. Steve Gaskins with the Florida Highway Patrol.
The deputy confronted Douglas, who began to drive off with the infant still in the car, while dragging the deputy with the vehicle.
The deputy fired at Martin, according to the FHP, striking him twice in the stomach.
A pursuit of Martin ensued northbound on I-75 into Marion County, then on State Route 200 into Citrus County.
Martin lost control of the vehicle on East Olive Lane, traveling into a ditch.
He was detained by members of the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office, the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office and the FHP.
A medical chopper took him to a hospital.
A trooper comforted the baby, rescued from the back seat.
“Very happy that my deputy didn’t get injured, my troopers didn’t get injured, the child didn’t get injured, no one else was injured in this case,” said Sgt. Gaskins.
The four-month-old infant was returned to the parents.
The FHP is planning to file a long list of charges against Douglas Martin.
As for the mother, whether or not she will be charged is still up in the air.
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