Charlotte County deputies engaged in a vehicle pursuit this morning after the driver of a vehicle fled a traffic stop, briefly dragging the deputy with the vehicle as he attempted to take her into custody. The vehicle pursuit began on Como Street in Port Charlotte and ended on Tangelo Avenue off Kings Highway.
At approximately 10:39am, a Charlotte County deputy attempted to make contact with a suspicious vehicle parked on Como Street. The vehicle, a blue Mustang, was observed to be driven by a white female. As the deputy approached, the vehicle sped off. The deputy followed the vehicle and conducted a traffic stop for several traffic violations. He made contact with the driver and identified her as Melissa King (10/13/77). King was argumentative and refused to cooperate with the deputy. The passenger in King’s vehicle turned the car off, at which time King began yelling at him as well. As King made an attempt to restart the vehicle, the deputy opened her door and attempted to stop her. King started the vehicle and sped forward, dragging the deputy approximately 10 feet before he could break free.
The deputy pursued the vehicle with back up units quickly arriving on scene. King was involved in a minor crash with another vehicle at Toledo Blade and Tamiami Trail, at which time the passenger in the vehicle exited and made contact with deputies. That crash investigation is being handled by the Florida Highway Patrol.
King continued to flee, turning on Veterans Blvd and eventually making it to Kings Highway. King turned onto Suncoast Blvd, and then onto Tangelo Avenue where she reached a dead end. She drove the vehicle into a private yard, striking the edge of a pole barn and disabling the vehicle in loose dirt. As deputies surrounded her vehicle, she continued to resist their attempts to detain her, swinging punches at the deputies as well as the patrol canine on scene.
Melissa King was handcuffed and placed under arrest. She was transported to a local hospital for medical clearance prior to transfer to the Charlotte County Jail.
Melissa King is currently charged with Aggravated Fleeing to Elude, Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer, Resisting with Violence, Driving on a Revoked License, Possession of Methamphetamine, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Additional charges will be pending from the Florida Highway Patrol.