A 37-year-old O'Fallon woman driving a gray 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix was stopped with spike strips early Monday morning in Cahokia after she led officers on two separate chases across St. Clair County on consecutive days.
Fairview Heights Police Lt. Steve Evans said the woman has been released from police custody pending further investigation. The woman's name is not being released since she has not been charged.
Originally pulled over at about 8:30 p.m. Sunday on Illinois 161 near the Fairview Heights MetroLink station, the driver was finally nabbed after 1 a.m. Monday in Cahokia. She had a bag of what appeared to be cocaine in the car at the time of her arrest, police said.
"In the five hours in between the two events, even if I had to come back to town, I think I would have gotten rid of my dope if it was me," Evans said.
According to police reports, the officer who originally pulled over the suspect had a drug-sniffing dog that indicated the presence of narcotics inside the car. When the woman was asked to roll down her window, she took off.
She headed south down 161 and took Frank Scott Parkway West to West Main Street in Belleville, where the Fairview Heights police broke off the pursuit. Officers from other agencies continued to chase the motorist until they lost sight of her on West Highway 50, near Interstate 64 in O'Fallon
At 1 a.m. Monday, Fairview Heights officers tried a second time to pull her over when they spotted the woman driving east on St. Clair Avenue onto southbound Illinois 161. Again she took off and the officer chased her to Illinois 161 and Sullivan Drive, before he broke off pursuit. Other departments continued the chase, and the suspect eventually was nabbed when she ran over spike strips that punctured her tires on Illinois 157 in Cahokia.
She was held by the St. Clair County Sheriff's Department until a Fairview Heights officer arrived to take custody of her.
Police said a search of the car found drug paraphernalia and a substance suspected to be cocaine.
Evans said the driver was spotted on routine patrol Monday morning. Police had no information to believe she would pass through the same area in which she was pulled over just hours before.
Police are seeking charges in connection with possession or narcotics and attempted aggravated fleeing and eluding a police officer.
Contact reporter Scott Wuerz at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 239-2626.