EAST LIVERPOOL - A couple wanted in connection with a string of daylight burglaries in three counties were arrested Saturday following a high-speed chase through the southern part of Columbiana County.
Sheldon Robinson, 38, is being held in the county jail after being charged with fleeing from police and obstructing police business. Melissa A. Dickson, 27, was not with Robinson during the chase but was taken into custody later Saturday at a Hanoverton-area residence.
The county sheriff's office and local U.S. Marshal's Office issued a news release this week asking the public to be on the look out for Robinson and Dickson, who are suspects in a series of burglaries in Columbiana and Trumbull counties as well as Hancock County. Dickson, who had two children with Robinson, also is wanted on charges of trying to smuggle drugs into the county jail.
Authorities had been searching for the pair the past 10 days when a deputy reportedly spotted Robinson driving his Ford F-150 near Gavers about 11:30 a.m., according to Chief Deputy Allen Haueter.
Another deputy joined in the pursuit as Robinson began criss-crossing the back roads around Highlandtown and Glasgow at speeds of up to 90 mph before changing directions and heading back to Gavers.
"They said he was running every back road he could, trying to lose them in the dust," Haueter said.
His deputies did lose Robinson somewhere southwest of Gavers on Hull Road but later came across him north of Wellsville on state Route 39 only to lose him again on Forbes Road.
East Liverpool police Officer Steve Adkins was next to spot Robinson's pickup truck getting off the south exit from state Route 11 leading into the city's west end. Haueter said Robinson had been known to frequent a house in the city on Ravine Street.
Adkins gave chase through the west end for several minutes before being joined on West Eighth Street by several other police cruisers. At this point, Robinson turned north onto Route 11, knocking over a yield sign and the truck becoming temporarily stuck in the grass median before resuming his attempted escape.
As Robinson headed toward St. Clair Township at speeds reaching 105 mph, township police Officer Scott Mick organized a barricade involving several semi-trucks and his cruiser, while also deploying tire deflation devices in the roadway in an attempt to slow his progress.
Upon seeing the blockade, Robinson stopped just short, jumped out of his truck and began to flee. The truck was left in reverse and drifted backwards into Officer Adkins' cruiser.
Meanwhile, Robinson began running across the southbound lanes of the four-lane highway with police in pursuit. Robinson was finally caught by police after he was tased by Officer Mick. He was taken to East Liverpool City Hospital to be examined but was later discharged and taken to the county jail.
Initial reports were that Robinson may have been armed but police did not find any weapons initially. "We have the vehicle locked down here, and a search warrant will be obtained, and we'll go inside it and tear it apart to see if there is a weapon inside," said St. Clair Township Police Chief Donald Hyatt.
Chief Deputy Haueter said Dickson was later taken into custody at a home on U.S. Route 30 just west of Trinity Church Road in Hanover Township. He said the sheriff's office had received information prior to the chase that she might be staying in a tent on the property.