WILMINGTON — The suspect in a vehicle pursuit resulting in a car on fire has failed an attempt to suppress evidence.
On Wednesday in Clinton County Common Pleas Court, Judge John “Tim” Rudduck denied the motion in the case against Charles Flint, 60.
Flint faces one charge of alleged felony 3 failure to comply after leading Wilmington police officers on a vehicle pursuit in May. The pursuit started around North South and Short Streets and led to the outside of the World Equestrian Center on State Route 730, police said. At that point, Flint’s vehicle began to break down and it started smoking, resulting in a fire in the vehicle.
Wilmington Police Chief Ron Cravens told the News Journal in May that the vehicle was “in bad shape” and “the way (Flint) was driving, it pushed the vehicle beyond its limit.”
Scott Evans, Flint’s court-appointed attorney, argued Officer Matt Hamilton conducted an illegal stop and the suspect’s Miranda Rights weren’t read during the arrest.
Hamilton took the stand and was asked about the events leading up the pursuit. Hamilton advised he was on patrol making a turnaround at a laundromat on South South Street and saw Flint driving. While Hamilton was unable to determine the speed, he advised Flint accelerated “rapidly” upon seeing the officer.
As Hamilton was following Flint, he advised he saw smoke coming out of the vehicle which “piqued his interest.” Flint made multiple traffic violations including failing to use a turn signal and driving past a stop sign, according to Hamilton.
The officer also advised he knew of warrants issued for Flint’s arrest.
Eventually Flint’s vehicle couldn’t go on and stopped, leading to Flint surrendering and the vehicle catching fire.
Evans asked Hamilton if Flint had said anything upon his arrest, but Hamilton could not recall him saying anything upon arrest.
Flint’s next court appearance is scheduled for September 22.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574