On Wednesday at approximately 9:30 PM, a Prescott Valley Police Officer on patrol on Prescott East Highway in Prescott Valley observed an erratic driver driving at a high rate of speed. The vehicle was a black Dodge Neon sedan. In an attempt to stop the vehicle using siren and emergency lights, the driver fled from the officer. The driver was observed by other uniform patrol officers and motorists driving erratically and speeding in excess of 80 miles per hour. The driver was last seen travelling east on State Route Highway 69.
Moments after losing sight of the vehicle, police dispatch began receiving telephone calls of a traffic accident with an overturned vehicle at the intersection of Navajo Drive and State Route Highway 69. Arriving at the accident scene, the police officers learned that the driver of the Neon had fled the scene on foot.
The Neon had crossed over the center line of the highway and struck head-on a Blue Toyota 4-Runner SUV traveling westbound. The SUV flipped over one and a half times, landing on its side. Other than being shaken up, the driver of the Toyota was unhurt. Witnesses stated it appeared that the driver of the Neon deliberately ran into the SUV.
The driver of the Dodge Neon was later located and arrested. Twenty-six year old Harrison T. Vina, a Prescott Valley resident, was transported and booked into Yavapai County Jail in Verde Valley on numerous misdemeanor and felony charges including: unlawful flight from law enforcement vehicle; failure to remain at accident scene; reckless driving; aggravated assault with deadly weapon; exceeding speed limit; failure to drive on right side of roadway; driving with license suspended/revoked/cancelled; and endangerment with substantial risk of imminent death.
The driver of the SUV stated that seat belts and air bags were the reason he was not seriously hurt. Motorists are reminded to drive respectfully on the roadways and if they see any erratic or suspicious driving, immediately notify law enforcement. Fasten your seat belts and drive safely!