At approximately 10:48 p.m. Saturday, a Russell County Deputy observed a vehicle driving around the football field in Lucas. The Deputy attempted to stop the blue Ford Mustang bearing a Kansas temporary plate.
The driver of the vehicle refused to yield and fled. The pursuit led through the city of Lucas before turning east onto K-18. The driver of the Mustang fled east on K-18 at speeds over 100 mph and eventually turned south on Highway 181 in Lincoln County. The pursuit went through Sylvan Grove and proceeded south on Highway 181 to the 209 exit at I-70.
Another Russell County Deputy successfully deployed stop sticks at this location, flattening one of the vehicles tires. The driver of the Mustang turned east on I-70 and continued to flee for another few miles. The driver finally pulled over in the area of mile marker 212 on I-70. The driver and passenger were both taken into custody at that location without further incident and transported to the Russell County jail for booking.
The driver was identified as 23-year-old Zachary A. Packard of Salina. Packard’s initial Russell County charges include Felony Flee and Elude, Reckless Driving, Driving while Revoked, Possession of Meth, Possession of Marijuana, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Packard is also being held on a Kansas Department of Corrections Parole Violation warrant.
The passenger of the vehicle was identified as 20-year-old Darian R. Vanmeter of Salina. Initial charges for Vanmeter include Possession of Meth, Possession of Marijuana, and Possession of Marijuana.
The Russell County Sheriff’s Office expressed thanks to the Lincoln and Ellsworth County Sheriff’s Offices, the Kansas Highway Patrol, and the Lucas Fire Department for their assistance in bringing this pursuit to an end without injury or property damage said Sheriff Fred Whitman in a social media release.