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Houston man arrested following cross-county high speed chase

Jerry Ellerbe, 51, was arrested after a high speed chase that started in Fritch and ended near Amarillo Thursday morning. (Photo: Potter County Sheriff's Office)

A 51-year-old man from Houston was arrested Thursday morning following a high speed chase that started in Fritch and ended near Amarillo.

According to the Hutchinson County Sheriff's Office, a Deputy was passed in Fritch by a rental van that was traveling in excess of 75 mph around 7 a.m. When the Deputy tried to stop the vehicle, the van sped through a stop sign in a school zone and a chase ensued.

Hutchinson County Sheriff Kirk Coker was leaving Fritch to head to the office in Borger at this time, so he turned around to join the chase, which continued toward Amarillo and on Hwy. 136. Speeds exceeded 90 mph and the driver was swerving all over the road, according to Coker. At times, the suspect was driving on the wrong side of the highway. At one point, Coker said it appeared the suspect was trying to ram a Potter County vehicle.

HCSO said the Deputy thought the van might contain stolen goods, drugs or other contraband.

As the chase go near Asarco in Potter County, Troopers with the Texas Department of Public Safety deployed spike strips, which disabled the vehicle.

The driver was identified as Jerry Ellerbe, from Houston. He was arrested and authorities searched the van but found that nothing in the van was stolen.

"We did a check and he was not wanted on any charges," Coker said. "He told us he didn't think we'd chase him across county lines, and that he just wanted to go home."

Ellerbe was booked into the Potter County Jail and was immediately taken to the Hutchinson County Jail, where he is being held on a third-degree felony charge of Evading Arrest in a Motor Vehicle.

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