Police looking for driver who crashed car into building during chase

CHARLOTTE — Dozens of officers were searching for the driver of a car that slammed into a building during a police chase Monday morning in southwest Charlotte.

Officers responded around 7:30 a.m. to the scene along Clanton Road near Interstate 77.

Reporter Anthony Kustura was with authorities and could see several CMPD cruisers in the business complex parking lot. A black sedan could be seen crashed against the building.

CMPD told Channel 9 that shortly before 7:20 a.m., officers tried to pull the car over and said a suspect wanted for a violent crime was behind the wheel.

Police said the suspect refused to stop and led police on a pursuit up I-77 to Clanton Road which ended when the car crashed into the building. Officers said they have not been able to find the driver. His name has not been released and police have not elaborated on the crime he was wanted for.

An employee inside one of the businesses told Channel 9 he saw the car speeding off the I-77 exit and head straight for the building. He said the car sped through the grass and hit a light pole before slamming into the building.

“He really made a lot of noise as he came in and then crashed into that storefront,” said Ben Previte, who told Channel 9 that the whole thing seemed to happen in slow motion as he unlocked the doors to open for the day. “I heard this loud crash and I turned around and I see this vehicle coming at me.”

Previte said he saw the driver get out of the car and run off. He told Eyewitness News that he has plenty to be grateful for.

“I’m thankful that it missed me and the store,” he said.

Officials said the driver was the only person in the car and that no other motorists were involved and no officers were injured. Channel 9 learned police are using surveillance cameras behind the office building to help track down the suspect.

Check back with wsoctv.com for updates on this story.