Tahlequah Daily Press

April 15, 2013

Man crashes truck, flees from cops

By JOSH NEWTON
Staff Writer

TAHLEQUAH — An attempted traffic stop early Friday morning quickly turned into a hunt for a man who allegedly crashed his truck into a tree and fled from police.

Joshua Kale Choate, 21, of Marble City, allegedly sped up in his truck when a Tahlequah police officer tried to conduct a traffic stop. Police said the truck turned north on Bliss, and officers lost sight of the vehicle until they discovered it had crashed into a tree. Officers said the tree fell onto the truck and into the road, but no one was inside the vehicle when they arrived at the scene.

Police were initially unsure about who was driving the truck, but began to look for the suspect near Bliss and Allen.

Choate reportedly phoned the Tahlequah Police Department dispatcher and said he was at a club in downtown Tahlequah, where a man had stolen his truck and abandoned him.

Choate told dispatchers he wanted to meet an officer at the club to file a report, but officers who were already in the area said Choate was not at the club.

According to police, Choate was actually on the run, but was later found and arrested on potential charges of attempting to elude, driving under the influence second or subsequent, driving under revocation, and transporting an open container.

Choate appeared in front of Associate Judge Mark Dobbins Friday, who set bond at $16,000