for immediate release
January 8, 2002

N E W S   R E L E A S E

A suspect in a pre-dawn shooting in Bay County has been arrested after a high-speed chase through Walton County and into Okaloosa County.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office has booked Shawn Mark Spieler, age 26 (7-5-75) on charges of Aggravated Fleeing & Eluding, Possession of Cocaine, and Driving on a Suspended License. In Bay County, charges against Spieler are pending.

Okaloosa Deputies were alerted a few minutes before 6:00 this morning (Tuesday morning) of a high speed chase approaching the county westbound on US Highway 98. Deputy Greg Porch deployed "stop spikes" on the highway near Big Kahuna's water park in Destin as other Deputies blocked side roads to keep the area free of other traffic.

The pursued vehicle, a Jeep Grand Cherokee stolen earlier in the morning in Bay County, drove over the spikes, then continued approximately six more miles. With his speed and maneuverability severely hampered by two flat tires, the driver pulled over and surrendered without incident in front of "Sammy's" nightclub, a short distance east of Brooks Bridge on Okaloosa Island. A 22 year old female passenger was not arrested.

Speiler is under investigation in Bay County in a shooting that left one man seriously injured in the Panama City suburb of Callaway approximately 2:00 o'clock this morning.

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for more information contact Rick Hord, Public Information Officer

(850) 651-7420

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