Chesterton Tribune



High speed pursuit Sunday on Indiana 49

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A woman with multiple unsecured children her vehicle, traveling at speeds near 90 miles per hour on Ind. 49, was the subject of a pursuit on Sunday which ended in the parking lot of Fairhaven Baptist Church, Porter Police said.

According to police, at 6:20 p.m. an officer responding to a report of a reckless driver observed a Cadillac northbound on Ind. 49 from the Indiana Toll Road traveling at “an extremely high rate of speed.” The driver--later identified as Shareece Minique Welch, 34, of Gary--disregarded a red light at the intersection of East Porter Ave., “without slowing down and nearly (striking) cross traffic,” then disregarded another red light at the intersection of Indian Boundary Road, police said.

“The suspect vehicle blew through the intersection (at Indian Boundary Road), nearly striking several vehicles,” the investigating officer stated in his report. “Due to the dangerous driving environment, I was not able to view my vehicle’s speedometer but would estimate we were traveling at 90 miles per hour.”

“As we approached I-94, I observed several children in the back seat who were clearly unsecured,” the officer further stated. “They kept looking back at my vehicle while shaking their heads. It appeared to me as though the children were in fear of their safety.”

Welch ultimately turned left onto westbound Oak Hill Road and then into the property of Fairhaven Baptist Church, where she exited her vehicle, “ran up to the doors of the church, and atempted to gain access.” The children, for their part, followed their mother out of the vehicle, “screaming and crying.”

“A quick look inside the vehicle determined none of the children had been in proper restraints or seats,” the officer added.

Welch advised police that “she realized running from the police was wrong and she apologized,” the officer stated. “She went on to say that she just wanted to feed her children at the church.”

Welch was arrested on charges of resisting law enforcement, two counts; and neglect of a dependent, five counts.

While being transported to Porter County Jail, Welch advised that, just prior to the pursuit, she was “lost and following ‘them’ around,” the officer stated. “I asked who ‘they’ were and she stated a ‘white car.’ She went on to say that she was lost after an incident in Gary earlier in the evening and that while driving around she saw a white car which she believed to be God. She stated she followed the white car around because she thought God was telling her where to go. I asked why she was driving so erratically prior the pursuit and she stated that everyone was chasing her. She stated that ‘many a car’ was trying to run her off the road and trying to hit her vehicle.”

The children were taken into custody by Child Protective Services and arrangements made to release them to a relative, police said.



Posted 10/30/2017




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