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High Speed chase in Martinsville ends peacefully

MARTINSVILLE – Martinsville Police officers attempted to stop a 2005 Toyota Camry driven by a female on Watt Street early Sunday morning. Two Hispanic males jumped out of the moving vehicle and the driver sped away. The driver led police through the streets of Martinsville including the Martinsville City Police Department parking lot reaching speeds of 60 MPH on one way streets. The Chase turned high-speed once the driver reached Highway 58 headed east toward Danville at speeds of 110 mph then exiting onto the 220 bypass headed toward Irishburg Road at speeds of 120 mph. The driver then exited 220 bypass on Irishburg Road and stopped at Eastwood community store where she was arrested without incident. The vehicle was registered to a male subject from Winston Salem with no tags assi. The 30 day tags on the vehicle were improper. The driver was wanted for several warrants out of Missouri. She was taken into custody and is being held at the Martinsville city jail. One Hispanic male was detained on Watt Street with a laceration to the forehead.

Official Press Release:

Vehicle Pursuit Leads to Arrest of Fugitive Female

Matinsville,VA: On December 23rd at approximately 9:18 AM, a Martinsville Police officer attempted to stop a Toyota Camery due to lack of registration on the vehicle. When the officer activated his blue lights, two passengers leapt from the moving vehicle. The vehicle did not stop for the officer’s lights and siren but lead the officer through a moderate speed chase through the uptown area including the parking lot of the police department. Once the chase left the city the suspect increased her speed. The chase lasted for 11 minutes until the suspect stopped and surrendered without incident. Melody Jean Smallwood was the driver of the vehicle and was arrested.

Melody Jean Smallwood (age 43) of Greensboro, North Carolina was charged with felony attempt to elude, no driver’s license, no vehicle insurance, no registration, and possession of marijuana. She is being held without bail at the Martinsville City Jail. Ms. Smallwood was wanted out of Missouri for fail to appear for possession of a scheduled drug. Officials in Missouri are being contacted to advise them of Ms. Smallwood’s location.

One of the passengers, Dean Hall, who leapt from the vehicle was transported and then released from the emergency room due to minor injuries from hitting the ground. Mr. Hall was later arrested for obstruction of justice.

The Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia State Police helped to bring the chase to a quick and safe conclusion.

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