Woman on high-speed chase found

An Indianapolis woman was arrested after leading police on a high-speed chase following a traffic stop.

Loniesha Dycus Mays, 23, was arrested early Sunday on preliminary charges of:

Resisting law enforcement with a vehicle

Reckless driving

Driving while suspended with a prior infraction

Operating a motor vehicle without ever receiving a license

Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Sgt. Gary Knoef observed a vehicle traveling 66 mph in a 55 mph zone on U.S. 31 at 2:55 a.m. Sunday, and followed the vehicle as it continued to travel over the posted speed limit. Knoef conducted a traffic stop on U.S. 31 near the intersection of Interstate 65, according to a sheriff’s department news release.

Knoef determined that the driver of the vehicle, later identified as Sherry Biggerstaff, 56, of Indianapolis, was operating with a suspended license, and he issued her a citation. Knoef then smelled the odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle, the sheriff’s department said.

After deputy Leah Burton arrived to assist, Biggerstaff and a female passenger were asked to exit the vehicle. After that, the passenger — identified as Mays — ran around the car, pushed Biggerstaff out of the way, got into the driver’s seat and sped away, the sheriff’s department said.

Knoef remained with Biggerstaff while Burton pursued the fleeing vehicle that reached speeds exceeding 90 mph, while Mays drove recklessly in and out of traffic on I-65, a report said. The pursuit was terminated, however, because it was considered a risk of life and property because the driver’s identity was known, a report said.

About a half hour after Mays drove away, Whiteland Police Department notified Bartholomew County dispatchers that they had located the vehicle and Mays at the Flying J Truck Stop in Whiteland.

Knoef determined Mays had never had a driver’s license in the United States and that her driving status was suspended.

A syringe and marijuana were located in the vehicle after Mays was stopped by police, a report said.

Mays was released from Bartholomew County Jail on $18,000 bond, according to jail booking records.

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Kirk Johannesen is assistant managing editor of The Republic. He can be reached at johannesen@therepublic.com or (812) 379-5639.