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Area agencies pursue, arrest driver for excessive speeding

Staff Writer
Chillicothe News
Stephanie Diane Byrd, 37, St. Louis.

On Wednesday afternoon several area law enforcement agencies joined together to pursue and ultimately arrest a female driver from St. Louis for excessive speeding, including through a construction zone.

About 3:27 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 16, the Livingston County Sheriff's Office (LCSO) was notified of a Carroll County deputy attempting to stop a northbound white-colored SUV that was driving in excess of 100 mph and being dangerous to other drivers. According to a press release from Sheriff Steve Cox as he and two deputies were headed that direction to assist the Carroll County deputy reported having lost sight of the female driver in Livingston County on U.S. Highway 65 near Missouri Highway H.

“LCSO staff were stopped at the Grand River Bridge construction when a northbound white GMC SUV came speeding across the bridge being checked at 60 mph in a 35 mph zone with workers present,” Cox said noting he was the first to initiate emergency lights and sirens and attempted to stop the vehicle.

“The female rapidly accelerated and slowed to turn east onto U.S. Highway 36 where the driver accelerated to speeds near 120 mph in a 65 mph zone,” Cox said in a press release. “Traffic on U.S. Highway 36 was unusually light but the suspect driver still made some bad passes, even passing two semi-tractor trailers that were side by side on the right shoulder. “

A short time later in Linn County, the suspect vehicle apparently blew the motor and the vehicle finally slowed to a stop about less than a mile east of the Meadville Junction. Stephanie Diane Byrd, 37, St. Louis, was arrested without further incident for the alleged felony resisting arrest by flight, excessive speed 118 mph in a 65 mph zone, 60 mph in a 35 mph construction zone with workers present and failure to yield to an emergency vehicle. Carroll County deputy sheriff issued Byrd additional citations.

She was transported to Daviess Dekalb Regional Jail pending the filing of formal charges. “The suspect was not always cooperative with law enforcement,” Cox said. LCSO was assisted by Chillicothe Police Department and Missouri State Highway Patrol.