Barking dog busts fleeing suspects
FORT BRANCH—A high speed chase through soybean and corn fields ended when officers followed the sounds of the suspects’ barking dog to where they fled on foot Monday night.
The chase started when Gibson County Sheriff’s deputy U.B. Smith made a traffic stop on the ramp from U.S. 41 northbound onto County Road 550 East at 10:40 p.m.
“I got about half-way to the car when they hit the gas,” Smith said.
Jason Griffith, 39, of Ingraham, Illinois and Kellie Griffith, 35, of Xenia, Illinois, fled in a red Toyota RAV4, going west on County Road 550 South, then south on County Road 50 West all the way down to Ind. 168 where they headed east.
The chase continued northbound on U.S. 41 where speeds exceeded 100 mph. The driver turned west in the last open median lane before the first Princeton exit off U.S. 41 northbound.
The Toyota kept traveling into a soybean field behind houses west of U.S. 41 and south of County Road 300 South.
“They did a couple of loops in the bean field before heading to the corn,” Gibson County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Bryan Ellis said.
After heading into the corn and driving along the edge of the field, deputies came upon the unoccupied vehicle crashed in a ditch near railroad tracks on the western edge of the field.
“We stopped and listened and we heard a dog barking,” Ellis said.
Officers followed the high-pitched barking of the small dog — later identified as Ro-Ro — to find Kellie Griffith lying on the ground. Jason Griffith was taken into custody after a short foot pursuit at 11:13 p.m.
During the vehicle search, police reported discovering methamphetamines,
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marijuana and drug paraphernalia in the woman’s possession.
She was charged with possession of methamphetamine, marijuana and paraphernalia. She remains in Gibson County Jail custody with bond set at $1,500.
He was charged with possession of methamphetamine, driving while suspended with a prior conviction, reckless driving, resisting law enforcement with a vehicle, resisting law enforcement/fleeing, possession of marijuana, and criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon.
He remains in Gibson County Jail with bond set at $1,500.
Gibson County Animal Services was called to take the dog, which was in custody with the couple, but went missing at the scene.
Haubstadt, Owensville, Fort Branch, and Princeton police were involved in the pursuit.