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McDowell County man charged after police chase across 2 counties, striking police vehicles

Teddy Justin Rathbone is charged with two counts of fleeingto elude arrest and one count each of driving while license revoked, possessionof drug paraphernalia, reckless driving to endanger and driving left of centerin McDowell County. He’s charged with possession of a firearm by a felon inBuncombe County. (Photo credit: McDowell County Sheriff’s Office)

Authorities say a high-speed chase from McDowell County into Buncombe County started with a domestic dispute call.

McDowell County officials have charged Teddy Justin Rathbone, 27, of Black Mountain, with two counts of fleeing to elude arrest and one count each of driving while license revoked, possession of drug paraphernalia, reckless driving to endanger and driving left of center.

In addition, Buncombe County officials have charged Rathbone with possession of a firearm by a felon.

On Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018, at around 11:40 p.m., McDowell County deputies responded to Walmart in reference to a domestic dispute involving a gun.

As they arrived on the scene, they spotted the suspect vehicle, a green truck, leaving the shopping center.

McDowell deputies pursued the truck onto I-40 eastbound off Exit 86 then back onto westbound I-40. The vehicle continued up Old Fort Mountain and into Buncombe County, where authorities there deployed stop sticks.

The suspect automobile proceeded onto Exit 64 in Black Mountain, took back roads onto U.S. 70 and appeared to be heading back to eastbound I-40. The truck made an abrupt turn onto Flat Creek Road and hit the McDowell Sheriff’s Office patrol car driven by Deputy Steven McPeters. Authorities say Rathbone struck Deputy McPeters’ car a second time and struck the McDowell Sheriff’s Office patrol car driven by Deputy Jesse Hicks.

The suspect continued onto Flat Creek Road and turned into his own yard. The automobile stopped in the backyard, and authorities were able to take Rathbone into custody.

No one was injured.

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