Trio arrested after car plunges into pond during police chase

UNION COUNTY, N.C. — A wild police chase ended with three people in custody after a driver crashed into a pond Wednesday afternoon in Union County.

Chopper 9 Skyzoom was overhead as police followed a driver in a white sedan who weaved through traffic, at times speeding on the wrong side of the road.

>> We streamed the chase LIVE -- you can find live, breaking news coverage on the WSOC NOW app on your Roku, Amazon Fire or Apple TV

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said the driver failed to stop when officers tried to pull the car over just before 4 p.m.

Police continued to follow the car through neighborhoods in Charlotte and then into more rural areas along Indian Trail Road in Union County.

Chopper 9 captured the moments the car went off the road and weaved through a bank parking lot.

The driver evaded stopsticks and went over a curb into a field.

Eventually, the driver turned down a gravel road and drove through someone’s property. From the air, the car could be seen nearly side-swiping a person on a tractor as the suspect drove through the grass.

Seconds later - the driver was doubling back - trying to get around officers when the car crashed into a pond in Wesley Chapel.

The three people in the car got out and surrendered to police. Two men and a woman were all detained.

The driver, Ward Baxter Weiland, 48, of Matthews, faces several charges, including multiple counts of habitual felon, felony speeding to elude, driving while impaired, possession of stolen goods and several driving-related charges.

A passenger, Armond Dewayne Douglas, 62, was taken into custody on outstanding charges unrelated to the pursuit.

A female occupant was released and does not face charges.

Channel 9 was there as crews towed the car out of the water.

CMPD said officers were initially trying to pull the driver over because the vehicle had a stolen tag. CMPD’s Air Unit tracked the car’s location as it entered Union County and continued to help other agencies.

The Union County Sheriff’s Office said no one was hurt in the chase.

Channel 9 is working to gather more information about the people inside the car and what they’ve been charged with.