YOUNGSTOWN - Police say they found a gun and several drugs after a man tried to drive away from them and also run away during a traffic stop just before 11 p.m. Thursday on the East Side.
Nataniel L. Hammonds, 34, 429 St. Louis Ave., was arraigned in Municipal Court on charges of fleeing and eluding a police officer, carrying a concealed weapon and 10 counts of possession of drugs.
A K9 officer and his partner were running radar on Himrod Avenue near U.S. Route 422 when they spotted a car with no front license plate and went to pull it over.
Instead, after stopping, the car, which police say was driven by Hammonds, drove away and turned onto Albert Street and then the Himrod Avenue Expressway before leaving the freeway at Williamson Avenue on the South Side and crashing into a tree on Chalmers Avenue.
When police ran up to his car no one was inside and saw Hammonds near a fence, where he then ran away behind several houses with officers following. He eventually was boxed in and taken to the ground, but he would not take his hands out of his waistband. He eventually was handcuffed and put in a cruiser, reports state.
Police followed his footprints in the snow and found a shoe box and a lunch box where Hammonds was standing near a fence. Inside the lunch box police found five rocks of crack cocaine, a glass jar of marijuana, several bags of pills including Vicodin, Percocet and Xanax and $32 in cash.
Inside the shoe box was a .25-caliber semiautomatic handgun. Police also found $191 in cash on him.
Hammonds is in the Mahoning County Jail awaiting a Jan. 4 preliminary hearing.