According to the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office, investigators were trying to find Michael Strange, 23, of Mountain Home, in connection with a vehicle theft on Wednesday morning from the Auto Credit lot on Hwy 62.
Surveillance video was used to identify Strange as the person who stole a 2004 Chevrolet pickup truck from the car lot and also entered two other vehicles to steal items.
Investigators found the stolen truck at Strange’s residence later on Wednesday, but Strange was not taken into custody.
On Thursday morning, authorities tried to pull over Strange while he was driving in a 1998 Ford truck, but he sped away.
The Baxter County Sheriff’s Office reports speeds were up to the 60 mph range.
Later in the pursuit, other officers tried to intercept Strange.
During the pursuit, Strange ran two red lights, nearly caused a collision, and started throwing clothes and other items out of the vehicle. He also drove through a ditch line and into the yard of a private residence. At that point, his vehicle became disabled.
Strange fled on foot into the woods from there and a private citizen began to chase him.
After a short distance, Strange told the civilian chasing him that he was armed and to back off. The citizen did not see a firearm, but he did discontinue the foot chase.
Soon after, the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office brought in assistance from a canine tracking team.
Strange was located about ¼ of a mile from his abandoned truck and taken into custody without further incident.
No firearm was found on him, but he did have drug paraphernalia.
Strange is being held in the Baxter County Detention Center on charges on fleeing from officers, reckless driving, possession of drug paraphernalia, littering, auto theft, theft and two counts of breaking and entering.
His bond has been set at $50,000 and he will appear in court on May 15.
About eight deputies and three canine handlers were involved in the pursuit and manhunt.
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