Police are looking for a Gaston County man in connection with a two-state chase early Friday morning.
Authorities finally called off the pursuit about halfway between Charlotte and Columbia, because traffic volume was starting to increase with the morning commute and police said they did not want to endanger other motorists.
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office says arrest warrants have been issued for James Curtis Stewart, 39, of McAdenville.
No injuries were reported during the pursuit.
The series of events began shortly after 3:30 a.m. on Old Plank Road in eastern Lincoln County. Authorities say a deputy on patrol spotted a red Ford Ranger pickup truck carrying a large amount of scrap metal. The deputy stopped the truck at Old Plank and Hines Circle roads.
Authorities say the driver, identified as Stewart, handed his driver license to the deputy, but the deputy learned there were outstanding felony warrants against Stewart in Mecklenburg County. The deputy said that when he told Stewart about the warrants, Stewart pulled away in the truck.
That started a pursuit that moved onto southbound N.C. 16, then the outer loop of Interstate 485 around western Mecklenburg County, and finally onto southbound Interstate 77.
N.C. Department of Transportation cameras showed three police cars, lights flashing, pursuing a truck on I-77 after 4 a.m.
At one point, police say, the truck’s driver went through a grassy median to escape.
The pursuit finally ended in York County, when police decided traffic was becoming too heavy.
Stewart faces charges of felony fleeing to elude law enforcement, along with a number of traffic charges. The outstanding Mecklenburg County warrant is for felony obtaining property by false pretense.
Anyone with information on Stewart’s whereabouts is asked to call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050.