• Last modified 684 days ago (Aug. 30, 2017)


High speed chase races through county

Staff writer

Two suspects driving an SUV stolen from Topeka cut a 100-mph path though a portion of Marion County on Saturday before being captured north of Florence.

According to Kansas Highway Patrol captain Joe Bott, troopers spotted an SUV on the turnpike east of El Dorado that had been reported stolen from Topeka. Troopers fell in behind to pull it over. The suspects exited the turnpike, then turned north on US-77.

“We had two units that were involved in the pursuit,” Bott said. “There were speeds in excess of 100.”

Marion County deputies, notified of the oncoming chase, went to the roundabout at Florence and laid stop sticks in the road. The SUV drove over the stop sticks.

“They were losing some tire tread,” Bott said.

The SUV drove through a grassy area and stopped. The suspects bailed out and fled, one of them into a cornfield.

Both were quickly captured. The driver, Gianni S. Noriega, 19, Topeka, was taken to Butler County Jail on suspicion of possession of stolen property, fleeing, and attempting to elude police. Bott said Noriega was in possession of a small amount of drugs and a handgun.

Noriega made his first appearance in Butler County District Court Monday afternoon. Bond had not been set.

The other suspect, a 17-year-old from Topeka, was taken to juvenile intake.

Sheriff Rob Craft said no one was hurt in the incident.

Last modified Aug. 30, 2017