Tossed cigarette leads to car chase, crash and foot pursuit

WILKES-BARRE — What started as a traffic stop for a tossed cigarette turned into a car chase with children in the pursued vehicle, a crash into a building and foot race before a Wilkes-Barre man was caught and charged.

Police say an officer initially saw Ryshan Gaut, 24, toss a lit cigarette out a vehicle window around 5:45 p.m. Saturday on Spring Street and initiated a traffic stop. But as the officer approached the vehicle the operator fled with two small children inside.

When the vehicle turned onto Highland Park Boulevard, city police stopped the pursuit because of the children in the vehicle, the nature of the offense, and the fact that a crowd was at an event at the Mohegan Sun Arena along the Boulevard.

Wilkes-Barre Township police continued the pursuit back into Wilkes-Barre where the car struck another vehicle, went into a parking lot and struck a building.

Police say Gaut was pursued on foot and taken into custody.

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