SOUTH FLORIDA (CBSMiami) – A car chase that started in Miami early Saturday morning and stretched 100 miles north to Stuart ended in a standoff that shut down northbound lanes of I-95.
The incident started shortly before midnight in Miami when cops responded to a domestic violence situation. Hammond shot at them and a brief shootout ensued.
The 36-year-old then managed to drag the woman with whom he was arguing into a mid-1980s Chevy conversion van — and the chase was on.
By the time the chase entered Palm Beach County, nearly 25 law enforcement vehicles and two helicopters — including state troopers and Broward Sheriff’s deputies and Miami-Dade Police — were in hot pursuit.
The family van weaved in and out of traffic at speeds of about 85 to 90 mph for more than an hour.
At about 1 a.m., law enforcement personnel from half a dozen agencies in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Martin counties had 36-year-old Samal Hammond in their sights and were waiting for SWAT team members to arrive.
Hammond was barricaded in his disabled car on the left median of I-95 and refused to come out.
After about an hour, SWAT team members with the Martin County Sheriff’s Office dislodged the suspect, police said. Interstate 95 northbound in Martin County was reopened around 2 a.m.
Hammond is being held in Martin County jail on charges of possession of a stolen vehicle and providing false information to law enforcement. He will eventually return to Miami-Dade County where he will face additional charges. Police said Hammond already has a rap sheet that’s 135 pages long.
No one was injured but at least half a dozen civilian and police cars were damaged in Palm Beach and Martin counties.
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