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Motorist nearly hits policeman

Maddie Hanna | Tuesday, October 4, 2005

The Mishawaka man whom police arrested last Thursday after a high-speed car chase that ended on Notre Dame’s campus was allegedly driving under the influence, St. Joseph County Police spokesperson Jaimee Thirion said Monday.

In what was the second arrest made on campus in three days, St. Joseph County police officers arrested Ronald Henning, Jr. at the intersection of Juniper Road and Bulla Road following a 17-minute pursuit that reached speeds of 80 miles per hour.

Thirion said Henning was driving “at a high rate of speed” southbound on Mayflower Road north of State Road 23 around 10 p.m. Thursday. He attracted attention when he crossed the centerline and nearly hit a police officer driving in the opposite direction.

“The officer pulled to the side of the road to avoid getting hit,” Thirion said. “After the vehicle passed, the officer activated his emergency lights. The driver stopped and turned around coming toward the officer northbound.”

Although the officer pursued the vehicle northbound on Mayflower with his sirens and lights activated, Henning did not pull over, Thirion said. The officer followed the vehicle onto the US 20 Bypass and the 80/90 Toll Road.

Thirion said Henning drove through two tollbooth gates. He got off the toll road, turned southbound on State Road 933 and then turned eastbound on Douglas.

At this point, South Bend Police and Notre Dame Security/Police (NDSP) became involved, Thirion said.

Henning turned south on to Ivy Road where it turns into Edison Road, Thirion said.

“South Bend Police laid stop sticks out to deflate the suspect’s tires,” Thirion said. “It then slowed him down to speeds of 15 to 20 miles per hour as he turned on Juniper Road.”

Henning was stopped at Bulla Road and taken to jail. He was charged with resisting arrest and DUI and was in jail Monday on a $1,500 bond.

Last Tuesday, NDSP arrested a South Bend man wanted on warrant on South Quad after he stole a backpack from North Dining Hall, associate director of NDSP Philip Johnson said.