2 held, 2 sought in Knightdale carjacking

Staff WriterJanuary 3, 2008 

— Two people are in custody after a carjacking in Knightdale late Wednesday afternoon led to a police chase into Southeast Raleigh and two accidents.

One crash involved a Wake County deputy and left a Raleigh woman critically injured.

Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison said law enforcement agencies are still searching for two additional suspects in the incident.

"This has all happened so fast, I'm still trying to get my information together," he said Wednesday evening.

Knightdale authorities were handling the carjacking, but Harrison shared details from the incident as he got them by cell phone Wednesday night. The incident occurred about 5:45 p.m. near Crawford Drive in Knightdale. Information received by local agencies suggested at least two people were in the vehicle, a Honda Accord. At least one of the car's occupants was armed.

A sheriff's deputy spotted the Accord on the U.S. 64 Bypass and followed it into Raleigh. Harrison said deputies tried to stop the vehicle with no luck. The car later hit a vehicle while traveling on New Hope Road. No injuries were reported in that crash. Several people jumped from the suspect vehicle on Atkins Drive in Raleigh, and two were captured, Harrison said. He said officials were looking for two more individuals Wednesday night.

About a mile from the search, a Wake sheriff's deputy responding to the carjacking call was involved in a collision with a red Kia Spectra and an older model burgundy Nissan Sentra on Rock Quarry Road near Ruby Drive, Harrison said. He said the injured persons were taken to WakeMed Raleigh Campus.

Deputy Anthony Locklear's condition was not available Wednesday night, but Harrison said Locklear was alert and talking when he was taken from the accident scene.

Brenda Curtis Smith, 58, of Raleigh, who was driving the Kia, was in critical condition Wednesday night. Rapher Ellis, 19, of Clayton, who was driving the Nissan, was in good condition. Two passengers in Ellis' vehicle, 18-year-olds Dezi Harris and Kevin Dobin, were treated and released Wednesday night.

Harrison said it was too early to tell what fallout, if any, would come from the wreck.

"Highway Patrol is investigating the accident," he said. "After they give us their report, we'll look at it from there."

Patrol Sgt. Shane Manuel said early reports from their investigation suggest the deputy was at fault in the wreck. The speed limit there is 55 mph, but it was unknown how fast the deputy was driving, he said.

"It seems the deputy crossed the center line," Manuel said.

marlon.walker@newsobserver.com or 836-4906

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