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Florida man identified, arraigned for OWI and fleeing police during Fort Gratiot Twp. chase

By Arica Frisbey of Sanilac Broadcasting

44-year-old Richard Tumminia of Spring Hill, Florida, was arraigned earlier Friday, February 3, on charges of fleeing and eluding, OWI, and resisting & obstructing after he led St. Clair County Sheriff deputies on a chase Wednesday morning while fleeing a possible abduction attempt in Sanilac County.

The charges stem from his actions on Wednesday, February 1, the same night that Central Dispatch sent out a lookout alert from Sanilac County. The alert, issued just after midnight, instructed law enforcement to “be on the lookout” for a dark colored sedan, possibly an Impala, fleeing from police. The car was the center of an investigation into a stalking complaint and had been last seen southbound M-25 near Lexington.

While on routine patrol, a St. Clair County deputy saw a black Impala approaching southbound at a high rate of speed on 24th Avenue in Fort Gratiot Township and began pursuing the vehicle.

Despite the deputy’s attempt to stop him, the Florida man ignored the lights and sirens as they approached the Blue Water Bridge, going through an empty toll lane and heading for the bridge before turning around. Exiting the bridge back into the U.S, he continued westbound in the eastbound lanes before entering onto eastbound I-94 in the correct direction.

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The pursuit continued on to Pine Grove Ave, now with multiple units involved. After numerous stop sticks were deployed, the Impala was operating on 1 good tire and 3 rims, and the subject attempted to evade police by driving in and out of a gas station parking lot. Upon exiting, the Impala collided with a patrol car, causing Tumminia to lose control and crash into a snowbank, at which he got out of the car and ran.

A short foot pursuit began and Tumminia was quickly detained, despite active resistance and continuous threats. His belligerent behavior continued in the patrol car, as well as while he was booked  Belligerent in the patrol car and while being booked at St. Clair County Jail, the Florida man is believed to be a flight risk looking to flee the state and possibly the country. He is being held at St. Clair County Jail on a $100,00 cash/surety bond following Friday’s arraignment.

The detective bureau is also continuing to investigate a possible abduction attempt in Sanilac County that might involve other parties.  More information will be shared when it becomes available.

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