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CRIME Police search for man after 2-county chase



Published: Thu, July 14, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Christopher Aczel is accused of ramming into a cruiser.

CANFIELD -- Police are looking for a 33-year-old man who led officers from the Mahoning Valley Law Enforcement Task Force on a chase into Portage County.

Task force officers were trying to serve a search warrant Tuesday evening on Christopher P. Aczel, no address available, a suspect in the breaking and entering of area pharmacies.

They stopped a Jeep driven by Aczel at Market Street and Princeton Avenue in Youngstown shortly after 7 p.m. The driver pulled over and then sped off with officers following.

How chase played out

The chase led into Boardman with police from that township and Youngstown joining the pursuit. Aczel was surrounded by police in Cornersburg at Tippecanoe Road and state Route 62, when he rammed an unmarked cruiser that had its lights and siren activated and contained three task force officers, police say.

He then traveled west on Shields Road in Boardman to North Broad Street in Canfield, where he drove around two marked cruisers and turned south on North Broad, the task force said.

On North Broad, a Mahoning County Sheriff's Department cruiser that had joined the pursuit was struck by a vehicle that failed to yield the right of way to a safety vehicle. The cruiser then crashed into a phone pole.

Deputy Jeff Saluga was extracted by the Cardinal Joint Fire District and was treated at St. Elizabeth Health Center.

The driver of the other car was cited for failing to yield to a public safety vehicle.

The chase continued on U.S. Route 224 through Canfield and Ellsworth townships and Berlin Center and into Portage County. Aczel turned into a wooded area, got out of the Jeep and fled on foot.

Drug and tactical officers from the task force, Youngstown police street crimes unit, Canfield and North Jackson police, Mahoning and Portage county sheriff's departments and the Ohio State Highway Patrol established a perimeter around the wooded area. Police dogs from Canfield and Portage County also helped track the suspect.

Police said Aczel should be considered armed.

Police filed an arrest warrant Wednesday for three counts of felonious assault on a police officer and felony fleeing against Aczel and additional charges may be filed.

Anyone with information on Aczel's whereabouts should contact Canfield police at (330) 533-2017 or (330) 533-4903.




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