- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Two St. Mary’s sheriff’s deputies fired gunshots at a sport-utility vehicle Saturday, the county sheriff said this week, after the driver allegedly tried to force an officers’ cruiser into a guardrail during a high-speed chase in Mechanicsville.
A judge ordered Monday that Teddy N. Ragan Jr., 44, of Mechanicsville be held in St. Mary’s jail in lieu of $45,000 bond on charges including first-degree assault, reckless driving, drunk driving and attempting to elude police.
Sheriff’s deputy Kenneth Flerlage initiated the pursuit of the GMC vehicle that afternoon as it traveled at more than 100 mph on Route 5 in Loveville, court papers state, before the vehicle almost struck several vehicles head on, turned onto Old Village Road in Mechanicsville and went down a dirt lane to go across the southbound lanes and grass median of the highway, where sheriff’s Lt. Philip Joseph joined the pursuit.
Ragan “intentionally swerved toward Lt. Joseph’s vehicle several times, while still traveling at a high rate of speed [in the northbound lanes], in an attempt to run Lt. Joseph into the guardrail, potentially causing death or serious injury,” according to charging papers.
The SUV stopped at the highway’s intersection with Charlotte Hall School Road after shots were fired at the vehicle by two deputies, identified this week by Sheriff Tim Cameron as Flerlage and Joseph. One or more of the gunshots was fired from one of the police cars, the sheriff said, but he said he did not yet know if the police car was moving or stopped when the shooting occurred.
Ragan initially was taken to MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital, where he told nurses and police that “he had been drinking beer and smoking crack all day,” and that a call he’d received prompted him to “do whatever it took to get to Bethesda,” detective Cpl. David Alexander wrote in a statement of probable cause.
Flerlage and Joseph have been placed on administrative leave with pay, Cameron said, during ongoing agency investigations of the matter.