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Crime & Courts

Driver speeds through crowd at S.E. Gross track meet after fleeing police, none injured

BROOKFIELD – Police in Brookfield are still searching for a man who drove a purple Hyundai sedan across the S.E. Gross Middle School playground a little after 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. The incident occurred during a track meet at the school following a high-speed chase, according to Brookfield Police Chief Steven Stelter.

Police said they have since recovered the vehicle, but are still looking for the driver.

Police said parents had to pull their children out of the way as the car sped through the crowded track meet and did doughnuts in the lot. Police said it was lucky that no one was injured.

According to police, the man was pulled over by police for driving through a stop sign at Southview and Raymond avenues. The officer was talking to the driver when he suddenly pulled away. The car continued northbound on Arthur Avenue to Lincoln Avenue pursued by police when it drove through the lot where the track meet was being held.

The chase was terminated after the car left the lot and headed east on Broadway Avenue to Park Avenue and was lost by police on 31st Street. Chief Stelter said police were told to stop pursuit because it was the middle of rush hour and there were many pedestrians in the area.

"Each chase has its own personality," Stelter said. "You have to weigh the various factors ... and the safety of people comes first."

Police were able to get the car's license plate and were able to track it to a 24-year-old woman who lives in Chicago's McKinley Park neighborhood. Police contacted the woman, who drove the car to the Brookfield Police Station on Tuesday night.

According to police, the woman said she was driving along First Avenue when she saw the man, who she had met before, and offered him a ride. While she was driving, she told him she was having trouble with the car and offered to let him drive it to determine the problem.

Police did not give a description of the man and said the woman told them she only knew his first name and did not know his address.

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