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4 Injured After Suburban Police Chase

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CARPENTERSVILLE, Ill. (STMW) – A drunken-driving and car-theft suspect was to appear in bond court Tuesday after he started a police chase over the weekend that began in northwest suburban Carpentersville, went through downtown East and West Dundee, and ended with a car crash at Routes 31 and 72, police said.

Three police officers and the suspect were injured, according to police.

Henry Benjamin III, 37, of Chicago is charged with possession of a stolen vehicle, causing great bodily harm while driving under the influence of alcohol, aggravated battery, driving with a revoked or suspended license, aggravated fleeing and eluding, criminal damage to property and various other charges.

Carpentersville police spokesman Cmdr. Michael Kilbourne said the incident began about 11:30 p.m. Saturday when a patrol officer saw Benjamin driving a pickup truck over the speed limit and wandering across lane lanes on Route 25. The officer stopped the truck on Route 25 near Lake Marian Road.

The officer reported that Benjamin began reaching into the truck cab’s center console, possibly going for a weapon, and that the officer reached into the truck through the driver’s side window and grabbed him. The officer said Benjamin then began driving forward, dragging the officer along until he let go several feet later.

And then the chase was on.

Police said the pickup, pursued by a Carpentersville police car, then drove south down Route 25 to Route 68, turned west onto 68, went into and out of the Dundee Township Recreation Center parking lot, then started west down Dundee Main Street (Route 72) through downtown East and West Dundee.

The pursuing car and the truck collided at Main and Van Buren streets, police reported.

As the chase neared the Spring Hill Mall area, West Dundee police positioned two of their cars at the intersection of Routes 72 and 31 to block traffic. Kilbourne said the pickup crashed into one of the West Dundee cars, then hit a utility pole, and the pursuing Carpentersville car struck the rear of the pickup.

Benjamin then got out of the truck and tried to run away, but was stopped by West Dundee and Carpentersville officers after a short foot chase, police said.

Police said three police officers and Benjamin were injured. Ambulances took two of the officers and Benjamin to Sherman Hospital in Elgin, where the officers were released after treatment and Benjamin was released back to custody on Sunday. The other officer was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Kilbourne said police determined that the pickup truck had been reported stolen in Chicago.

– Elgin Courier-News, via the Sun-Times Media Wire

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2011. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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