Chase and carjackings: Police face hard decision whether to engage in pursuit

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Last crash right before end of chase

Last crash right before end of chase

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DENVER -- When Ryan Stone ran from authorities, allegedly carjacking several vehicles and crashing into multiple vehicles on Wednesday morning, Colorado State Patrol and several other agencies were faced with the difficult choice of whether to actively chase him.

Stone was on the run for about an hour, but Colorado State Trooper Nate Reid estimates that CSP actively pursued him for less than 20 minutes.

The first pursuit began shortly after a trooper spotted the Red Ford Edge identified in an Amber Alert issued by Longmont police. But with a four-year-old boy inside the vehicle and Stone reaching speeds exceeding 100 mph on I-25, CSP called off its chase.

'We don't want to push this person," Reid said. "Obviously he's already stolen a vehicle and he's driving very recklessly with that child, so we backed off a bit. We backed of quite a bit as a matter of fact."

Troopers did resume their pursuit a bit later, but when Stone ditched the SUV, carjacked another vehicle and then entered the interstate going the wrong way, the chase stopped again.

"When you have somebody coming the wrong way and a patrol car pushing them the wrong way, that gets a little out of control for anybody," Reid said.

Although the active chase was suspended for much of the time, CSP and other agencies relied on the same helicopter footage available to Fox31 viewers. Reid said constant tracking was critical to their efforts.

"Often times, if you're not chasing somebody, like we weren't two separate times in this thing for a long period of time, we lose visual," Reid said. "We don't know where people are."

In addition to the aerial footage, Reid says they relied on communication between dispatchers from various agencies to stay ahead of Stone and try to keep drivers out of harms way.

Though, six cars were struck and a trooper was injured, Reid says they believe patience was the best strategy.

"Anybody that is driving as recklessly as that person was today, and taking the risks that they were, we have to sit back and just wait," Reid said. "Hopefully that person will slow down or abandon that vehicle and thank goodness he did, when he did."

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