Saturday morning at approximately 1:51 a.m., Trooper William Stancy was working on I-80/94 near the 2 mile-marker. A vehicle was clocked traveling eastbound at 95 mph. The speed limit on the roadway is posted 55 mph. As Trp. Stancy activated his emergency lighting in order to perform a traffic stop on the vehicle, a black 2019 Infiniti Q50, the driver attempted to elude the officer and made abrupt lane changes, eventually taking the exit to Cline Ave. As the vehicle drove on the ramp, the driver lost control, resulting in the car leaving the roadway, rolling several times before coming to a rest. The driver, who was the only occupant, was ejected through the sunroof. Trp. Stancy took the driver into custody and immediately began to render first aid to the driver. The driver was transported to Northlake Methodist Hospital in Gary for treatment of minor injuries.
While at the scene of the crash, several articles were recovered from inside the vehicle including a stolen Glock 9mm handgun and 17 grams of individually packaged marijuana. Other items of value were also recovered that the rightful owners have yet to be determined as the investigation is ongoing. The vehicle was a rental car owned by Enterprise Leasing.
Upon being released from the hospital, the driver, identified as Varnell Lamont Dixon, 23 years of age from Chicago, IL, was transported to the Lake County Jail. Mr. Dixon is facing the following charges:
- Unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon- Level 4 Felony
- Felon carrying a handgun without a license and having previous conviction- Level 5 Felony
- Carrying handgun without a license and having previous conviction- Level 5 Felony
- Resisting law enforcement with a vehicle- Level 6 Felony
- Theft of firearm- Level 6 Felony
- Theft of property- Level 6 Felony
- Receiving unidentified property- Class A Misdemeanor
- Dealing marijuana- Class A Misdemeanor
- Possession of marijuana with prior conviction- Class A Misdemeanor
- Reckless driving results in injury- Class A Misdemeanor
- Operating a vehicle without ever receiving a license- Class C Misdemeanor
- Speeding- 95/55- Infraction
- Failure of occupant to use safety belt- Infraction
Assisting at the scene were: Gary Fire/EMS, Sgt. Dwayne Dillahunty, Trooper Khari Walton, Trooper Alaa Hamed and AC Towing.
*All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in court*