On 27 Nov 17 Deputy Zide was patrolling the north bound lane of Interstate 77 at a designated cut-a-cross prior to exit 6, when he observed a white Subaru station wagon, North Carolina registration, pass his location. The vehicle appeared to be slowing as it passed and continued to slow as it proceeded down the road.
Deputy Zide continued behind the Subaru, at one time pacing the Subaru at approximately 55 mph in a 70 mph zone.
Deputy Zide continued his pace with the Subaru continuing to travel at the slower rate of speed, with no visible reason for the slowed speed.
The driver of the Subaru then crossed the right fog line multiple times, and was slow to regain proper position in the lane, crossing the fog line a whole tire width at times.
Deputy Zide pulled alongside the vehicle noting a male Caucasian driver with shorter dark hair and short beard.
Deputy Zide then activated the emergency lights to conduct a traffic stop. As Deputy Zide began approaching the rear of the vehicle the driver fled. Deputy Zide returned to his patrol car advising dispatch of the situation at which time assistance from the Ohio State Highway Patrol Post 84 along with other law enforcement agencies was requested.
The vehicle, travelling northbound, approached the Macksburg exit and left the Interstate 77, turning and then entering onto the southbound lane, northbound towards traffic. The pursuit was then terminated due to public safety.
The Subaru continued into oncoming traffic, eventually entering the median and continuing in the appropriate lanes of travel.
As the vehicle approached Caldwell the driver again accelerated to a high rate of speed towards Caldwell, eventually making a U turn and turning back towards the Interstate 77 again entering the southbound lane, heading northbound.
Deputies did not pursue the vehicle further, however continued northbound at which time sight of the vehicle was lost. Deputies, along with other law enforcement agencies continued to search for the vehicle, however met with negative results.
The driver of the vehicle is suspected of being Zachary R. Hardwood, age 36, LKA 6 Sunset Drive, Weaverville, NC. Hardwood is wanted in North Carolina in connection with a robbery.
On 28 Nov 17 the Noble County Sheriff’s Office reports the Subaru was left at their Senior Center. Attempts to locate the subject are continuing.