Va. Shoplifting Suspect Flees Across I-95, Is Arrested in Median

WASHINGTON — For deputies in Stafford County, it wasn’t easy keeping an accused shoplifter in custody on Wednesday afternoon.

The Stafford County Sheriff’s Office said they were called to the Target at the Stafford Marketplace at 2:45 p.m. after store security reported seeing a man cutting wireless headphones from a shelf and putting them into his back pack.

The suspected shoplifter, Austin Jacob Baxter, 22, is accused of running from the first two deputies on the scene in a foot chase through the store. The sheriff’s office said that when deputies caught up to him, Baxter “violently resisted” arrest and assaulted the two before being handcuffed.

Before he was led away to a patrol car, Baxter allegedly slipped one hand out of his handcuffs and made another attempt to get away. Once his hand was free, the sheriff’s office said, he ran out of the store, down an embankment behind it and onto the busy southbound lanes of I-95.

Baxter survived the dangerous run across the interstate and then was caught by a third deputy and his K-9 partner in the median, the sheriff’s office said.

Baxter faces a list of charges after the incident, including two counts of assault and battery on a law enforcement officer, one count of fleeing from a law enforcement officer and one count of escape.

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