Two people were transported to the hospital following a single-vehicle wreck that slowed traffic on U.S. 701 Business (Northeast Boulevard) Friday, as patrol cars lined the roadway and officers investigated a wrecked vehicle in the tree line near a busy intersection at Isaac Weeks Road.
“The wreck occurred after a guy took a friend’s vehicle without permission, picked a female passenger up and then lost control of it,” said Clinton Police Chief Donald Edwards, who was able to provide preliminary information on the incident. No names have been released.
The chief said the vehicle was stolen from the Building Bridges physical therapy center on Beaman Street, Clinton, and it traveled down Beaman Street toward U.S. 701 Business. The wreck occurred shortly after 1 p.m. Friday. Edwards said the vehicle, a silver The Toyota 4-Runner, was reported stolen, it was wrecked and a mix of Clinton Police officers and Sampson County Sheriff’s deputies descended on the area “all in one sequence.”
The details of the wreck were hazy, but the Toyota 4-Runner ultimately barrelled through the U.S. 701 and Beaman Street intersection and ended up in a grassy area off the main roadway having struck a tree, the police chief noted.
The two occupants were transported to Sampson Regional Medical Center. The extent of their injuries was not immediately known.
The air bags were deployed and there was some blood inside the vehicle, according to reports. Sources said that in the immediate aftermath, the male suspect who allegedly took the vehicle attempted to go for one of the unoccupied patrol vehicles of a responding officer in a further ploy to escape.
“They’re investigating it,” said Edwards, noting charges would likely be forthcoming. “The vehicle was taken without permission, there was reckless driving and there is suspicion of impairment.”
No other vehicles were involved, authorities said.
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