High-speed chase ends in Simpsonville

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By Gayle Deaton

A Lexington man accused of being involved in an armed robbery fled Fayette County and led police on a high-speed chase through Shelby County before it finally ended in Simpsonville.

The suspect was initially being pursued by Versailles/Woodford County police who asked Frankfort police for assistance when he crossed into Franklin County.

According to a Frankfort police report, Officer David Shroerlucke spotted the vehicle and continued the pursuit. Capt. Jeff Abrams also joined the pursuit, the report said, and both officers attempted to make a traffic stop. The driver refused to stop, and the chase continued into Shelby County with speeds reaching in excess of 100 miles per hour, the report said.

Frankfort police asked the Shelby County Sheriff's Office to assist by placing stop sticks in the roadway near Shelby County High School.

The suspect managed to evade the stops sticks but one of the police cruisers was disabled.

Kentucky State Police placed another set of stop sticks in the roadway in Simpsonville on U.S. 60.

The suspect's tires were flattened, and according to the police report, he then pulled to the side of the road and surrendered to police without further incident.

The driver, Driver Douglas P. Becksted II, 39, of Lexington, was arrested and taken to the Franklin County Regional Jail. He was charged with first-degree fleeing and evading police, DUI with aggravating circumstances and operating a motor vehicle on a suspended operator's license. Additional charges are pending against Becksted in Lexington, the report said. A passenger in Beckstad's car, Steven C. Ritchie, 27, also of Lexington, was detained and turned over to Lexington Police for charges relating to the armed robbery in Fayette County, the report said.