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Felony for run-in with St. Clair Twp. police

EAST LIVERPOOL – A Pennsylvania man, who was involved in a police pursuit Wednesday afternoon, will find himself back in the area next Thursday morning for his preliminary hearing.

Luke D. Hertweck, 34, of Pittsburgh is charged with multiple charges, including a felony, after police finally cornered him around state Route 170 and Calcutta Smiths Ferry Road around 5:30 p.m.

According to the report narrative, police eventually learned of a reckless black Chevrolet Suburban with Pennsylvania plates near Fredericktown. After St. Clair police attempted to execute a traffic stop with lights and sirens near Old Fredericktown road, the driver, who was later identified as Hertweck, accelerated at a high rate of speed southbound on state Route 170. With police still in pursuit, Hertweck eventually pulled over, yelled at the approaching officer and pulled out again.

Throughout his reckless driving, Hertweck kept telling the officer that he was not stopping his vehicle, so additional officers from his department, East Liverpool and Liverpool Township were dispatched to the scene.

St. Clair police Sgt. George Davis was able to force Hertweck’s Suburban off state Route 170 by striking his vehicle twice and taking Hertweck into custody near the Tri-Ohio Realty parking lot.

Hertweck allegedly continued to resist even when at gunpoint, so Sgt. Davis had to use a front leg sweep and force him into handcuffs while he was on the ground.

After transporting Hertweck to the police station a few blocks away, North Star ambulance was dispatched there and he allegedly gave the crew a hard time. Hertweck signed a medical refusal.

Once he was escorted towards a holding cell by police, Hertweck suddenly alleged a heart problem and asked to go to East Liverpool City Hospital, where he was cleared and transported to Columbiana County Jail.

Hertweck appeared this morning in East Liverpool Municipal Court, where he was scheduled to return at 9 a.m. Thursday for his preliminary hearing on charges of failure to comply with a police officer, a third-degree felony; resisting arrest; lanes of travel; and an unsafe vehicle, after he continued to operate his damaged vehicle.

Judge Dominic Frank also set bond at $15,000 cash or surety bond and scheduled a revocation hearing at the same time as his preliminary hearing. He claimed indigency and was assigned a county public defender.

If convicted, Hertweck faces up to five-and-a-half years in prison and more than $11,000 in fines.

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