Video shows man stealing police cruiser, leading Ohio officers on chase

LORAIN, Ohio – A man stole a police cruiser and led officers on a high-speed chase Friday afternoon through Lorain, Ohio, said authorities.

It happened during a prisoner transfer between Lorain police and the Lorain Sheriff's Office, according to Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth.

The suspect got into the cruiser and took off. The pursuit went west on OH-113 through Birmingham and Milan, north on US-250 towards Sandusky and then north on OH-13 towards Huron.

Huron police set up spike strips that punctured one of the cruiser's tires, Sigsworth said. The car went into the Thunderbird Golf Course and hit an embankment before ending up in a ditch.

The suspect  was taken to a hospital. No one else was injured.

"Extremely dangerous situation. He was driving very, very recklessly and, of course, the cruiser had firearms in it," Sigsworth said. "Fortunately, the weapons were apparently secured, as they normally would be. He was unable to access those firearms."

Christina Pettry, the mother of the suspect, told WJW her son has several mental health issues. She said she was trying to get him help.

“I told my daughter to call the Nord Center hotline and get him an ambulance because he was not acting right,” she said. “ The ambulance came, and they said he was able to tell them his name, where he was and he said he took his medicine. They said they couldn’t take him to the hospital because he appeared fine and, if they did it, it would be kidnapping.”

Pettry said the officer told her he was going to take him to the library so he could charge his phone.

“The officer must have then found he had a warrant," she said.

Pettry said the warrant stems from him failing to appear in court. She said he was unable to go to court because he was in the hospital.

Pettry said, shortly after he left the house with the officer Friday, she learned from others that he was leading police on the chase.

“All I wanted was for my son to get help,” she said. “I was crying out for help because I was afraid he would hurt himself."

Pettry said she feels the system failed her and her son.