Police chase leads to charges

By John W. Goodwin Jr.



A man and a woman were arraigned Friday in Youngstown Municipal Court after leading police on a high-speed chase throughout the city Wednesday.

Richard Ditosto, 20, of Youngstown is charged with resisting arrest, fleeing and eluding police, and failure to comply with the signal or order of a police officer. Chiana Sharpe, 23, of Columbus was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear in court on a 2006 driving-under-suspension charge.

Ditosto remains in the Mahoning County jail on $34,500 bond and will be back in court Thursday. Sharpe is free on a $5,000 bond and expected to appear in court for sentencing April 24 on the driving charge.

According to police, officers spotted Ditosto driving a Pontiac Sunfire with only one headlight shortly after 9 p.m. Wednesday on the Madison Avenue Expressway. Sharpe was a passenger in the car.

Police attempted to stop the car, but reports say Ditosto accelerated nearly causing an accident on Wick Avenue. Ditosto, reports said, continued running through intersections on the North and East sides at a high rate of speed with police close behind.

Reports say a man trying to cross the street was forced to retreat to the sidewalk to avoid the fleeing car.

Police said Sharpe, at one point during the chase, opened the door and attempted to jump from the vehicle, waving frantically at officers chasing the car.

Ditosto, according to reports, did stop the car and get out at Cantwell and Crofton avenues, but then began running from officers. A police dog caught the fleeing man by the leg a short distance away from the car.

Reports say officers had to fight with Ditosto to place handcuffs on him.

A police check revealed that Ditosto had two warrants out of the city for loud music and no driver’s license. Police also found a small bag of suspected marijuana in his pants.

City records show Ditosto has a previous arrest for loud music and a 2011 arrest for receiving stolen property.

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