CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Police think a stabbing at a north Charlotte gas station may have set off a bizarre chain of events that ended with a crash and house fire miles away in east Charlotte.
Officials said a man was stabbed just after 4 a.m. behind the Shell station on Sugar Creek Road. Minutes later, police said the people who they think may be the suspects in that stabbing crashed into a power pole more than seven miles away on Eastway Drive near Central Avenue, bringing down lines and blocking the road.
A witness at the stabbing scene told officers that the assailants sped away in a white Nissan sedan. A short time later, an officer spotted a white Nissan Altima on Eastway Drive at The Plaza and tried to pull it over.
The driver refused to stop, though, and sped away from the officer. Minutes later, that same Nissan slammed into a power pole and other cars on Eastway Drive near Arnold Drive, landing in the front yard of a home.
(Click PLAY below to listen to the 911 call from the stabbing scene)
Witnesses said the car ran off the road, went airborne and landed on a neighbor’s car, pushing it onto its side. The impact was so violent, the car's engine could be seen on the ground.
The crash brought down power lines, which produced sparks that started a fire on the roof of a nearby home, investigators said.
Channel 9 was there as firefighters worked to put out the fire as flames climbed from the home's roof, just a few doors down from where officials were investigating the crash. It took firefighters about 10 minutes to contain the fire, which caused $10,000 in damage.
Two adults and a child were able to make it out safely, officials said.
According to police, the stabbing victim was rushed to the hospital with critical injuries. Two people injured in the crash were taken to Carolinas Medical Center and are expected to be OK.
Eastway Drive was shut down for 12 hours in both directions as investigators worked to piece together the early-morning chaos and utility crews worked to repair power lines.
On Thursday, police said they charged Santaurus Neely with assault with a deadly weapon, assault on a female and attempted robbery in connection with the stabbing at the gas station.
Police think Neely stabbed a man behind the gas station and punched a woman. Detectives are still trying to figure out if Neely is connected to the crash that happened minutes later.
Channel 9 spoke to neighbors who were inconvenienced by the road closing all day.
“School buses didn't come this way either so that probably hurt people that had to go to school this morning for tests and stuff,” said neighbor Damaji Beachem.
Patsy Adams said the road closure kept her from seeing her husband at a nearby rest home.
"He doesn't know anything about this. He's just expecting me to be there and I'm not there," said Adams.
Phyllis Caldwell said she was unable to get her car repaired. “Going to get your car serviced and they don't have no power.”
“All of a sudden you come out. BOOM! All this. It's dangerous. It's dangerous,” said Caldwell.
Police have not identified the stabbing victim, or the two men involved in the crash.
They also haven’t said whether the men in the crash will face any charges.
This is an ongoing investigation. Check back with wsoctv.com for updates.
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