Police: Seymour resident arrested after chase, charged with possession of drugs, resisting

HAYDEN — A Jackson County man was arrested on five felony charges after leading police on a car chase and foot pursuit in southwestern Jennings County.

Luke S. Newkirk, 26, of 4615 Ashwood Drive, Seymour, is preliminarily charged with possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana, two counts of resisting arrest and being a habitual traffic offender.

The early afternoon pursuit Monday┬ásoutheast of Hayden began when Jennings County Sheriff Gary Driver saw an item fall out of the back of a pickup truck while both were southbound along County Road 575W, according to a news release from the sheriff’s department.

When the sheriff attempted to pull over the driver to tell him about the lost item, the truck turned west onto County Road 200S and sped off at a high rate of speed, the release stated.

After the pickup turned into a driveway, the driver — later identified as Newkirk — jumped out and ran into a cornfield while his truck was still in gear, the release stated.

Once deputies arrived to set up a perimeter, a police dog was used to track down the suspect. Following an extensive search of the field, Newkirk was found hiding several hundred yards away, the release stated.

Newkirk, who sustained bite wounds to his leg during his apprehension, was taken to St. Vincent Jennings Hospital in North Vernon before he was booked into the Jennings County Jail, where bond was set at $6,255, the release stated.

While all five preliminary charges are classified as Level 6 felonies, formal charges will be determined by the office of Jennings County Prosecutor Brian Belding.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.