A chaotic police chase involving a carjacking, a tractor-trailer-jacking, crashes, 100-mph driving, gunfire and a thunderstorm caused a massive six-hour traffic tie-up Thursday on the Pennsylvania Turnpike near Lancaster County.
State police said the dramatic events began at about 2:30 p.m. in Dauphin County, passing through Lancaster, Berks and Chester counties before ending about an hour later.
The problems began when Matthew Malory, 28, driving a pickup truck on Route 322 in Dauphin County, hit two other vehicles, disabling his truck, the Patriot-News reported.
On foot, Malory unsuccessfully attempted to hitch a ride with a tractor-trailer.
He then jumped through the open window of a passing pickup truck. The driver, who was not identified, tried to drive to a state police barracks in Newport, but Malory pushed him out of the truck and drove away, the Patriot-News story said.
However, the stolen pickup truck had an On-Star tracking system that allowed police to see where it was heading, state police said in a news release.
Troopers from the Bowmansville station tried to stop the pickup between the Lancaster/Lebanon and Reading exits, but Malory was driving east at more than 100 mph.
A major thunderstorm then hit the area, and because of the rain, the high speeds and the heavy traffic, Malory was able to elude troopers for a time.
He crashed at mile marker 295.6, a few miles before reaching the Morgantown exit. At that point, police said, Malory jumped out of the pickup and forcibly stole a tractor-trailer, fleeing down the road in the rig. Troopers continued to pursue him.
"Malory used the tractor-trailer to forcibly move slower cars from his path by striking them," police said.
After hitting a box truck, Malory briefly stopped once more. Troopers fired several rounds from their guns into the tractor-trailer in an attempt to stop it. However, officials said, Malory was able to get the tractor-trailer moving again and drove for about a mile before he again came to a stop.
At that point, troopers fired more rounds of ammunition into the tractor-trailer, and Malory was caught, police reported.
The pursuit and crashes closed the turnpike for about six hours, while the investigation was conducted.
Austin Beiler, 28, of Lancaster, was one of hundreds of people who got caught in the mess.
Beiler got on the turnpike at the Lancaster/Lebanon exit at about 4:45 p.m. Thursday and headed toward Philadelphia, where he planned to help his girlfriend move.
About a mile later, the traffic slowed and came to a complete stop, he said, and remained stuck for more than two hours. Beiler didn't get off the turnpike at the Morgantown exit until about 8 p.m.
Drivers just gave up after a time, he said.
"People were getting out of their vehicles," he said. "It was pretty interesting to see people standing all over the turnpike."
Most people behaved well, he said.
"People were fairly patient," he said. "It's one of those things that there's nothing you can really do but sit and wait."
Beiler was able to use his phone to access the Internet. He saw there was an accident, but didn't know about the mayhem surrounding it until Friday.
He did see multiple police cars going up the turnpike shoulder toward Malory's final crash site. He also passed the crashed stolen pickup truck and saw a stopped tractor-trailer with police cars surrounding it, farther up the road.
A former resident of Orlando, Fla., Malory now lives in Downingtown, police said. Investigators don't know what sparked Malory's actions, Trooper John Sours of the Embreeville barracks said Friday.
After being captured, Malory was taken to Paoli Hospital for the treatment of moderate injuries, including broken ribs he sustained in the multiple crashes. He remained in the hospital early Friday, Sours said.
Malory has been charged with multiple offenses, including simple assault, kidnapping to facilitate a felony, unlawful restraint, false imprisonment, robbery of a motor vehicle, reckless driving, reckless endangerment and other charges in relation to the incident.
Last month, Malory was charged with eight counts of reckless endangerment as well as criminal mischief, risking catastrophe and disorderly conduct for an incident in Uwchlan Township, north of Downingtown. His preliminary hearing on those charges is scheduled for later this month.
Uwchlan Township police declined to comment on the nature of that incident Friday.
Anyone who was struck by Malory on Thursday or who witnessed the incident is asked to contact the state police in Embreeville at (484) 340-3241.
Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/710612_Carjacking--100-mph-chase--gunshots-close-turnpike-for-6-hours.html?page=all#ixzz23CNfr9Kl
In: Regional News
Tags: Pennyslvania, turnpike, gunshot, carjacking, 100, mph, chase, truck, stupid, fail
Location: Pennsylvania, United States (load item map)
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