Pinal County deputies led on chase of stolen car

crokOn Monday, January 13th, 2014, at 8:14 p.m., a Pinal County Sheriff’s deputy attempted to stop a 2000 Ford Mustang near Alameda and Kings Ranch Road in Gold Canyon. The deputy attempted to stop the vehicle after he had discovered the license plate on the vehicle was reported as “Stolen” out of Apache Junction.

When the deputy attempted to stop the vehicle by using his emergency lights, the driver of the Mustang accelerated and attempted to get away. A pursuit was initiated and during the pursuit, the vehicle turned onto a road which evidently, the driver didn’t realize was a dead end road. The driver of the Mustang quickly made a u-turn and drove head on towards the deputy’s vehicle. The deputy had to steer to the right to avoid a head on collision as the suspect vehicle missed his patrol vehicle by inches. The deputy turned around and once again, was able to catch up with the Mustang.

Stop Sticks were put in the roadway near Golden Rim and Kings Ranch Road, and they successfully hit one of the driver’s side tires; it began to deflate. The Mustang still did not stop, and a second set of Stop Sticks were put in the roadway near Desert Dawn and Kings Ranch Road. After the second time the vehicle struck the Stop Sticks, one of the tires from the driver’s side fell off of the rim.

The Mustang turned westbound onto U.S. 60 and accelerated to nearly 100 mph. The driver had already failed to stop at stop signs and red traffic signals. Eventually, the vehicle drove through a closed gate in the 1000 block of East Junction, Apache Junction and stopped.

The male driver and female passenger both ran from the vehicle. The female was caught a short distance away. She was identified as Melissa Scala, age 20, of Mesa. She identified the driver of the vehicle as “Duane.” Deputies on scene and officers from the Apache Junction Police Department were not able to locate the driver in the immediate area.

When deputies checked the “Vehicle Identification Number” on the Mustang, it was reported as a “Stolen Vehicle” out of Gilbert. Inside of the Mustang, a receipt from “We Buy Scrap” was located. The receipt showed Duane Michael Parks (age 36 of Apache Junction) as the person who sold the scrap metal earlier that day. The receipt also listed information from his Arizona Identification Card on it.

Officers from the Apache Junction Police Department went to his residence, which was 2 miles away. Duane Parks was located and positively identified both by the deputy who pursued him and his passenger, Melissa Scala, as the driver of the vehicle. When Duane was arrested, he was in possession of marijuana and a marijuana pipe. Both were seized and later placed into evidence.

When a deputy attempted to put Duane in a patrol car to be transported, he attempted to pull away to get free. He was taken to the ground and then once he complied, he was put into the rear seat of a patrol car.

Duane was booked into the Pinal County Jail for Aggravated Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer, Theft of Means of Transportation, Felony Flight, Resisting Arrest, Possession of Marijuana, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Charges of criminal damage and Leaving the Scene of an Accident are pending.

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