Ocala man jailed after telling deputy he ran because he was being chased

Sunday, May 16, 2021

An Ocala man who was wanted on multiple warrants told a Marion County sheriff’s deputy that he ran from him “because you were chasing me.”

Marion County sheriff’s Dep. Calvin Bates holds 22-year-old Benjamin Tyree Townsel at gunpoint after he ran from him following a high-speed pursuit this past Tuesday.

Dep. Calvin Bates was driving down Juniper Road this past Tuesday when he clocked a clocked a silver Toyota four-door sedan traveling at 51 mph in a 30-mph zone. When Batts attempted a traffic stop, the vehicle fled at a high rate of speed.

The driver, later identified as 22-year-old Benjamin Tyree Townsel, eventually lost control of the vehicle and slid into an overgrown lot and fled on foot. Batts soon caught up with Townsel and held him at gunpoint before placing him under arrest.

Townsel was transported to the Marion County Jail and charged with resisting a law enforcement officer with lights and siren active, knowingly driving while license suspended or revoked, possession of marijuana more than 20 grams and resisting an officer without violence. He also was wanted on outstanding warrants for robbery by sudden snatching, battery, grand theft, criminal mischief and simple assault.

Townsel was being held on $19,000 bond. He is due in court Nov. 17 at 9 a.m. to answer to the charges.

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