Man charged after police pursuit in Elkins


ELKINS, W.Va. — A man with multiple identification forms ranging from Texas, California, Guatemala and North Carolina has been placed into custody after a police pursuit through Elkins.

On Oct. 30, officers with the Elkins Police Department were conducting a routine patrol of the area of Harrison Avenue in Elkins when they observed a white vehicle pass by without its headlights on, according to a criminal complaint.

Officers then activated their cruiser’s emergency lights and siren in an attempt to conduct a traffic stop on the vehicle, which officers later discovered was driven by Juan Chitop, 27, but “traffic from both directions was hindering [officers] in doing so safely,” officers said.

Juan Chitop

The pursuit traveled to “Third Ward” and turned onto Yokum Street, at which point Chitop “rapidly accelerated onto Lincoln Avenue and ran the stop sign at the intersection of Yokum and Lincoln,” according to the complaint.

At that point, Chitop’s vehicle “failed in maintaining its lane and began to drive off the roadway into yards of residences,” and Chitop’s vehicle came to a stop in an alley between Lincoln and Robert E Lee avenues in Elkins, officers said.

When officers gave Chitop commands to remain in his vehicle, but “he refused the commands” as he exited the vehicle and walked towards officers, stating ‘this was his home,’ according to the complaint.

Chitop attempted to get back into his vehicle after continuing to ignore officers’ commands, which resulted in “officers[s] tasing [Chitop] with the desired effect,” at which point officers placed him into restraints, officers said.

Officers then attempted to retrieve Chitop’s identification from his wallet and discovered four different forms of identification, including three different social security cards, and from those documents, officers found that they listed his address as North Carolina, Texas, California or Guatemala, according to the complaint.

Chitop has been charged with fleeing with reckless indifference. He is being held in Tygart Valley Regional Jail on $10,000 bond.

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