An eight-mile, high-speed chase by state troopers in Carroll County ended in a crash that left a 14-year-old Baltimore boy dead and another critically injured in the wreckage of a stolen car late Saturday, authorities said.
During the pursuit on Route 140, from Finksburg to Westminster, the driver exceeded speeds of 100 mph and ran at least one traffic light, police said.
The Baltimore boys evaded a "rolling roadblock," in which troopers surrounded the stolen car in an effort to slow or stop the driver. Minutes later, the 1990 Buick crashed into an Exxon sign on Route 140 at Cranberry Road, near Westminster's Cranberry Mall, and became wedged between two steel poles.
The driver, Anthony Tyrone Anderson, of the 3400 block of Dupont Avenue, was declared dead at the accident scene.
The other boy suffered multiple injuries and was flown by MedEvac helicopter to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. Police said charges were pending against the youngster, whom they declined to identify. He was reported to be in critical condition yesterday.
Police said the chase began on westbound Route 140 near Route 91 in Finksburg shortly before 11:30 p.m. when Trooper Jeffrey S. Hartzler clocked the Buick at 70 mph in a 45-mph zone. The trooper used his siren and emergency lights but couldn't get the driver to stop, said Chuck Jackson, a state police spokesman.
While in pursuit, police learned the Buick had been reported stolen earlier Saturday from a home in Randallstown. Other troopers from the Westminster barracks joined the chase and attempted a rolling roadblock, Mr. Jackson said.
Police said they didn't know who stole the car and they have not been able to interview the passenger because of the severity of his injuries, Mr. Jackson said.
"There are many unanswered questions," Mr. Jackson said.
He said a preliminary review showed that Trooper Hartzler followed state police procedures on high-speed pursuit. However, as a routine matter, the police agency will review the incident, Mr. Jackson said.
Troopers are given guidelines on when to pursue a vehicle. The guidelines instruct troopers to weigh the urgency of pursuit against the risk and to consider such factors as the seriousness of the offense, conditions of the highway and the amount of traffic.
A supervisor can order a trooper to halt pursuit if the risks seem too great.
"We provided the driver with the opportunity to end the chase safely.Those efforts failed," Mr. Jackson said.
He said troopers receive extensive training in vehicle pursuit, including yearly updates, hands-on experience and classroom instruction.
"We clearly spell out the liability issue," Mr. Jackson said. "We go to great pain to avoid pursuits if possible."