High speed chase Saturday night leads to arrest

Law enforcement officers from multiple agencies were involved in a high-speed chase Saturday night before the car they were chasing struck two vehicles and the driver allegedly tried to flee on foot.

According to a probable-cause affidavit from Sgt. Mickey Buffkin of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, the car had been reported stolen, and a gun found inside the vehicle had also been reported stolen.

Tuesday was the second straight day that the driver of the car, Jamar McNealy, 21, appeared in court. On Monday, Jefferson County District Judge Kim Bridgforth ruled prosecutors had probable cause to charge him with first-degree battery in connection with a shooting on University Drive in October.

Reading from Buffkin’s affidavit Tuesday, Deputy Prosecutor Maxie Kizer said deputies attempted to stop the car McNealy was driving for speeding while traveling north on Blake Street. The car stopped at Sixth Avenue and Blake Street, and when deputies approached it, took off again with deputies in pursuit.

Buffkin said in the affidavit that deputies, officers from the Pine Bluff Police Department and the Arkansas State Police joined in the chase, which lasted 10 or 15 minutes on the west side of town, and McNealy allegedly ran a number of stop signs and stoplights before getting back on Blake Street,

As he approached the Martha Mitchell Expressway, McNealy allegedly ran a red light and collided with two vehicles before the vehicle he was driving came to rest against a utility pole and McNealy ran from the car toward a motel before he was caught. He allegedly had suspected marijuana in his pocket when he was arrested.

Buffkin said in the affidavit that a check of the vehicle license number indicated the vehicle had been reported stolen, and a loaded .45-caliber handgun in the driver’s seat also had been reported stolen in Jefferson County.

Pine Bluff District Judge John Kearney set a $250,000 cash-only bond Tuesday after ruling that prosecutors had probable cause to charge McNealy with felony fleeing, two counts of theft by receiving (one for the vehicle and one for the gun), two counts of criminal mischief and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

McNealy also is listed as an absconder by the Arkansas Department of Correction and will be held without bond until a hearing is held to determine if he has violated terms of his parole.