Man faces multiple charges after chase
By John W. Goodwin Jr.
A 32-year-old city man is facing multiple charges after wrecking his car during a high-speed chase with police, then fighting with officers attempting to take him into custody.
Lebron C. Bunkley Jr., of East Ravenwood Avenue, is facing charges of driving under suspension, resisting arrest, felonious assault and failure to comply with the order of a police officer. Bunkley was taken to St. Elizabeth Health Center for treatment after the accident Monday morning.
Bunkley is expected to appear for arraignment today in Youngstown Municipal Court.
According to police reports, Bunkley was at a gas station in the 3200 block of Market Street about 2 a.m. Monday when he saw officer Chad Zubal pull into the parking lot. Reports say Bunkley pulled out of the lot at high speed after seeing the officer, initiating a police chase.
Reports say Bunkley drove through stop signs at Hudson, Firnley and Glenwood avenues before opening the driver’s door as if he were planning to jump out of the car. He attempted to make a turn onto West Ravenwood but missed the turn and ran into a tree.
Bunkley, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown from the car and landed on his back about 10 feet away from the vehicle. Zubal reported that Bunkley appeared to be unconscious with a severe cut to the right side of his face and head, but Bunkley jumped to his feet and began swinging at the officer, hitting him in the face.
Reports say Bunkley pleaded with the officer not to go to jail and made comments such as “you’re going to have to kill me” while fighting with Zubal. Bunkley reportedly was covered in blood, making it difficult for the officer to grab hold of him.
Zubal, reports say, used his Taser on Bunkley to no effect. The officer ultimately struck Bunkley in the head with the Taser during the fight. The officer was able to hold Bunkley long enough for backup officers to arrive.
Officers, after placing Bunkley in handcuffs, opened the trunk of the car Bunkley was driving and found a black Nike bag containing three bundles of cash, papers listing names and dollar amounts and cellphones. Officers also noted that the trunk had a strong odor of raw marijuana.
County records show Bunkley has been arrested previously for attempted possession of cocaine, possession of a dangerous ordnance, illegal possession of a weapon and probation violation.