For the second time in a month a Westville resident has led officers on a
high-speed pursuit, Burns Harbor Police said.
Ralph Edward Labarr, 50, has been charged with three counts of resisting law
enforcement; four of criminal mischief; four of criminal trespass;
intimidation/threats; criminal recklessness; reckless driving; and driving
According to police, at 5:33 a.m. Saturday an officer on patrol observed
Labarr southbound on Ind. 149 from eastbound U.S. Highway 20 and recognized
him as the same person he arrested on Jan. 31 and then again on March 18 on
a charge of DWS.
On March 18, police said, Labarr fled from officers at speeds of between 65
and 85 miles per hour before being taken into custody at the intersection of
1050N and Meridian Road.
On Saturday, police said, Labarr once again fled after the officer attempted
to stop him at the intersection of 1050N. Instead Labarr turned left onto
eastbound C.R. 1000N, disregarded a stop sign at the intersection of C.R.
200W, turned right, and continuing at a speed of 50 mph—in a zone posted at
30 mph—disregarded a lighted traffic signal at the intersection of U.S.
Highway 6, police said.
Eastbound on U.S. 6, Labarr made a “sudden turn” into the Arbor View Animal
Hospital, “drove through the west lawn between trees and took evasive moves
to avoid crashing into Porter County Sheriff’s officers’ vehicles,” then
regained U.S. 6 and reached speeds in excess of 80 mph, police said. The
pursuit finally ended when Labarr drove into the backyard of a home in the
40 block of C.R. 700N, through a wooded area, and into the front yard of a
home in the 700 north block of C.R. 50W, where officers managed to box in
his vehicle, police said.
Labarr then fled on foot into a wooded area, where the BHPD officer tackled
him, police said. But Labarr’s hands were clasped under his body and Labarr
refused orders to release his hands and the officer—fearing that Labarr
might be in possession of a weapon—struck Labarr twice in the side of a head
with a closed fist, police said.
Labarr was then taken into custody.
Labarr “stated that I had ‘no reason’ to stop him,” the BHPD officer said in
his report, “and while escorting him out of the woods to be searched he
stated he would be looking to find me . . . while I was off duty without
‘gun and badge’ so he could see ‘how tough’ I am.”
Labarr also revealed knowledge of the BHPD officer’s personal life,
including the name of a female acquaintance and the kind of car he drives,
In addition, Labarr stated that “he would drive through Burns Harbor once
released from jail” and “would hire a lawyer that ‘likes to sue cops,’”
Labarr—who was issued four citations for speeding, three for disregarding a
stop sign, and one for disregarding a lighted traffic signal—was medically
cleared at Porter hospital and then transported to Porter County Jail.