WARREN - A multi-jurisdictional pursuit over the weekend that began in Niles and ended with a crash in Braceville is under review by a Police Department supervisor.
Warren Capt. Timothy Bowers said he will review the dashboard camera video from Officer David Weber's cruiser, talk to the officers involved and check the incident report to determine if pursuit policy was followed. He said if any violations are found, an internal investigation will be launched.
"Any time there is a chase, it needs to be reviewed. In this case, a neighboring department called off the pursuit and we chased the suspect for 31 minutes, so I think it needs to be looked at, especially since there was damage to two police vehicles," Bowers said Tuesday.
He said the fact there is a review under way does not necessarily mean the officer was wrong to engage in the pursuit.
"Just because everything turned out OK doesn't mean it was done right either," he said.
Harley Tibbs, 28, 847 South St., Niles, was arrested at his home Sunday and remained at the Trumbull County Jail Tuesday on a $150,000 bond set during his arraignment Monday. He is due back in court Jan. 5 for a preliminary hearing on charges of felony failure to comply and felonious assault on a police officer.
The chase started in Niles after police there stopped a Chevrolet Blazer about 7:30 p.m. for reckless operation. The driver then sped off, according to police.
Niles police stopped chasing the vehicle after getting the SUV's temporary tag number.
About 8:30 p.m., two Warren police officers parked in the May's Towing lot saw a vehicle matching the description at Niles Road and South Street.
Detective Sgt. Michael Merritt was returning from a call on Fairmount Avenue N.E. in the department's crime scene van and helped the two officers slow down the Blazer, a Warren police report states. The driver, identified as Tibbs, crashed into the back of the police van, and Merritt and Officer Trevor Sumption got out of their vehicles to confront him, according to police.
Tibbs then put the Blazer in reverse - pinning Sumption between the SUV and the police van - and headed north on South Park Avenue, the report states.
Officer David Weber pursued Tibbs on North Park Avenue for about 20 minutes, crossing into Champion and Southington. Tibbs and Weber both crashed into a ditch at Eagle Creek and Braceville Robinson Road in Braceville.
Tibbs then ran into a wooded area and Weber was unable to find him, the report states.