The driver who led police on a high speed chase around the Beltway in Maryland Saturday morning has been arrested on attempted murder charges.
Maryland State Police say Christopher E. Murphy, 30, of Horsham, Pa., led officers from several departments on a pursuit this morning from Prince George’s County to Baltimore and deliberately rammed and attempted to ram police cars.
Police said they first got calls at 10:40 a.m. reporting an erratic driver in a convertible Ford Mustang on the inner loop of I-495 near Rt. 650 in Maryland. A Maryland state trooper spotted the car minutes later and attempted to stop it.
Murphy refused to stop and accelerated as he continued to weave through traffic, passing vehicles on the highway shoulders and crossing multiple lanes of traffic at speeds that ultimately reached more than 100 mph, according to police.
During the ensuing pursuit, Murphy was observed raising both hands above his head and making other inexplicable gestures. On multiple occasions, he attempted to strike pursuing police cars. On northbound I-495 near Rt. 202, while traveling about 80 mph,
Murphy braked abruptly and swerved right, striking a Maryland State Police patrol car as it passed and causing the trooper to lose control. As that patrol car spun, it struck a second State Police car, which in turn, struck a passing civilian vehicle. As Murphy passed the crash scene, he was observed pumping his fist in the air with apparent delight at what he had caused.
The pursuit continued north on I-495 to I-95 with Maryland State Police, Prince George’s County Police and Prince George’s County Sheriff’s Office units involved. Baltimore County Police and Maryland Transportation Authority Police officers also assisted in the pursuit as it neared Baltimore.
Murphy lost control of his car after running over tire deflation devices deployed by MdTA officers just north of the Ft. McHenry toll plaza on I-95. Murphy struck two Prince George’s County Police cars and was taken into custody by state troopers.
The two troopers who were injured in the crash at Rt. 202 and were taken to Shock Trauma in Baltimore were both released from the hospital Saturday evening, after being treated for their injuries.
Dr. Ellen Sistare of Prince George’s County was also injured in the crash. She was treated and released from the Prince George’s County Hospital Center.
Due to the large crash scene at Rt. 202, the outer loop of I-495 had to be closed for several hours. Detours were set up with the assistance of personnel from the State Highway Administration.
A motive for Murphy’s actions remains unclear at this time. The investigation is continuing.