HARDIN - Without a heroic effort by the North Calhoun Fire Department and Calhoun Sheriff William Heffington and a deputy, the outcome of a high-speed chase could have been considerably different, the sheriff said.
The chase that ended in Kampsville started in Madison County, then continued into Jersey County and then Calhoun County.
Christopher Raines of White Hall, age 40, faces multiple charges from the high-speed chase through multiple counties. The Joe Page Bridge in Hardin was temporarily shut down until Monday afternoon after a vehicle driven by Raines plowed through what Sheriff Heffington described as gate after gate.
“I kept hearing this crushing sound as he was going through each gate,” Sheriff Heffington said. “When he got to me on the bridge, he almost hit my truck. I narrowly escaped getting t-boned. At the rate of speed, he was going, that would not have been good.
Many of those attending the fireworks and gathering in Kampsville could have been seriously hurt, said Sheriff Heffington, if the North Calhoun Fire Department hadn't reacted as quickly as they did with a road blockage and the large fire units.
Raines sped around the fire engines, but with the wet grass lost control and hit a shed and knocked it off its blocks. Sheriff Heffington penned the man in with his vehicle and then made the arrest.
Raines faces the following charges: Aggravated Fleeing, Attempting To Elude Police Officers, A Weapons With a Knife Charge, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession Of A Controlled Substance, Destruction of Government Property - the Joe Page Bridge - and Possession of Hypodermic Needles. He also faces warrants in St. Louis County and the City of Alton.
“We are very lucky no one got hurt in this chase,” Heffington said.
Raines’ bond is $100,000, Sheriff Heffington said.