Pair arrested after police pursuit through Southland

Two people were arrested following a fleeing driver incident yesterday morning which resulted in a police pursuit through rural Southland.

Southern District Police said at about 8.40am on Tuesday, a man driving a stolen vehicle has crashed the vehicle on the Devil’s Staircase (State Highway 6), near Lake Wakatipu.

Not long after, he was picked up by a woman driving another vehicle, police said.

The duo headed south, but were identified by police in Lumsden who signalled for the pair to pull over.

The vehicle failed to stop and instead continued travelling south.

It was sighted again in Benmore where spikes were deployed, however they were not successful.

Police said the vehicle was located again, near SH6 and Limehills-Browns Road, and was followed by police using lights and sirens.

"Speeds did not exceed the posted speed limit of 100kmh and the manner of driving was reported to be consistent. However, as the vehicle travelled towards the Winton township staff decided to abandon the pursuit.

"The fleeing vehicle was sighted again on Eglington St and has driven past a primary school where two school buses and other members of the public were parked at the intersection.

"Determined not to stop, the offending vehicle has driven up onto the footpath and headed north, passing a coffee cart and several pedestrians along the way.

"The vehicle has lost control while travelling on the footpath and grass verge adjacent to Great North Rd and driven into a patrol car, which was positioned on the corner of Great North Rd and Clyde St."

A 31-year-old woman and a 41-year-old man were arrested at the scene, police said.

The patrol vehicle received damage to its front, passenger wheel.

The woman is due to appear in Invercargill District Court on 19 May on charges relating to reckless driving, failing to stop, and unlicensed driver failed to comply with prohibition.

The man is due to appear in Invercargill District Court on 23 May on charges relating to theft of a motor vehicle, resists Police, and careless driving.

"These offenders have demonstrated a complete disregard for every other person who may have been using the road and footpath at this time.

"It is extremely fortunate the public and the offenders themselves were not seriously injured as a result of this reckless driving behaviour."

Enquiries into the incident remain ongoing.



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