Charges filed in wild freeway chase

February 17, 2009 3:32:08 PM PST
Criminal charges have just been filed against Danny Joe Flores, the man accused of leading authorities on a high speed chase along the Gulf Freeway. The driver of the silver Honda flipped one police unit, and rear ended a Precinct 8 SUV before spinning out and being taken into custody. PHOTOS: See dramatic still images from the freeway chase
VIDEO: Watch the incredible video of the chase, crashes and arrest

Flores, 25, was charged with two counts of aggravated assault of a public servant. That's for the two peace officers Flores is accused of sending to the hospital.

Flores was in the hospital himself, but now he's in the medical ward at the Harris County jail. He left the hospital in police custody, wearing a hospital gown and a neck brace, and with his head bandaged.

Monday afternoon, a police chase that sped along the Gulf Freeway began with a domestic violence call in Clear Lake. Flores' car hit a police vehicle, flipping it. The chase finally ended near the South Loop, where Flores' car hit a deputy's SUV. Flores was pulled from his car by officers, but not before he allegedly slashed at one officer with a box cutter knife.

Deputy Wayne Garrish was cut on the arm, requiring about three stitches.

"He's very lucky that he had his body armor on, because when the suspect came across and swiped his across his chest, he actually did cut his shirt and ultimately ended up cutting his arm," explained Precinct 8 Chief Deputy Phil Sandlin.

HPD Officer Stephen McGee was in the police car that flipped over. Investigators say he was saved by his seat belt. He's at home recovering from his injuries.

Inside the last vehicle Flores' car struck was Precinct 8 Sgt J.T. Isom. His intention was to put out road spikes, but there wasn't time.

"I moved over to the left lane, trying to get out of the way of the pursuit and the suspect," recalled Sgt. Isom. "That's when he veered over and struck my vehicle."

Despite that accident, Sgt. Isom was not injured. Flores is expected to be charged with a separate count of aggravated assault in connection with the domestic violence call that started the whole chase.

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