FOUNTAIN - Bay County Sheriff's deputies are still trying to figure out why a Calhoun County man led them on a high speed chase Friday afternoon. Authorities say they already had outstanding warrants for the suspect, Joseph Spence.
Spence was booked into the Bay County jail Friday night and is facing old charges, as well as some new ones.
Bay County Sheriff's investigators are piecing together why a man from Altha ran away from them.
"Typical, do you stop him, do you don't stop him? Do you chase him, do you don't chase him, you know? People in these situations are desparate," said Frank McKeithen, Bay County Sheriff. "He had a warrant on him. He knew he was going back to prison and so good thing we were able to catch him."
Authorities say the suspect, 36 year old Joseph Spence, stole a trailer in Lynn Haven. About the time dispatchers were issuing a BOLO or Be On The Look Out message Friday afternoon, a deputy spotted Spence in a red truck on Highway 231.
"He's been to prison. He's on probation. He had just recently been violated. He knew he was going back to prison he said and that's why he didn't stop," said McKeithen.
Deputies tried to pass Spence's red truck but were side-swiped. The high speed chase lasted for about 15 minutes.
Authorities say the trailer the suspect stole eventually fell off during the police chase and flipped over.
The chase ended when authorities forced Spence off Deep Springs Road in Fountain using a P.I.T. maneuver. He then crashed into a tree.
Sheriff McKeithen says they did find what they believe is a flare gun that fell out of the truck.
Authorities aren't sure how much the items Spence stole are worth, but believe he could be responsible for other thefts in the area.
Spence has been charged with fleeing and attempted eluding and felony habitual driving with license suspended and revoked. He already had an outstanding warrant for violation his probation for driving with a suspended or revoked license.
The Sheriff's Office says there could be additional charges once their investigation is wrapped up.