Man who led police on high speed chase charged
February 19. 2013 3:47PM
Alexis Nunez, 40, of Sheridan Street, was taken into custody Sunday after leading several police departments on a chase in the northbound and southbound lanes of Interstate 81 near Moosic and Avoca.
During the chase, Nunez crossed the median of the interstate several times, twice driving in the wrong direction into oncoming traffic, according to an arrest affidavit. He was apprehended after state police deployed a spike strip near the Dupont exit, which punctured the front tires of the vehicle.
According to arrest papers, the incident began around 2 p.m. when police were called to the area of 70 Sheridan St. for a report of a hostage situation. Police then received word that a third party had called 911 to say a man was holding a woman hostage inside a Dodge Caravan.
Dispatchers at 911 determined the phone call originated from a parking lot near the Big Lots store on Kidder Street. Officers Bernard Magagna and arrived and spotted the suspect vehicle. Nunez exited the vehicle and was ordered by police to stop. He ran to the vehicle and sped off and attempted to ram a police cruiser operated by officer Alan Gribble.
Nunez drove onto Interstate 81 North with a female, who appeared distraught, in the passenger seat. The chase continued on 81 North near the Moosic exit. Nunez drove over the median and began driving southbound in the northbound lane. He then traveled the wrong way down the entrance ramp from Moosic, circled around, and began driving southbound in the northbound lane.
Nunez again crossed the median near the Avoca exit and began traveling south in the southbound lane until he reached the area of Wilkes-Barre Township. He crossed again the median and traveled north in the northbound lane until the vehicle was stopped by the spike strips.
A loaded shotgun was found between the front seats of the vehicle. The woman was recovered safely.
Nunez was arraigned Sunday night at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility on one count each of kidnapping, aggravated assault, possession of a prohibited firearm, unlawful restraint, recklessly endangering another person, simple assault, fleeing or attempting to elude police, accidents involving damage to an attended vehicle and seven counts of reckless driving.
District Magistrate Judge set Nunezā??s bail at $30,000 straight cash. He faces a preliminary hearing on Nov. 15 before District Magistrate Judge Martin Kane Wilkes-Barre.