Riviera teens drove 120 mph on I-95 during 15-mile police chase, turns out they weren’t involved.
One man who was driving south on I-95 during the chase described it as “sheer lunacy.” Records from police show that the Dodge Charger in which the teens were riding topped 120 mph.
According to police records, the driver, Demetrius Napier (19 years old), and the passenger Marcus Pettis (18 years old) were both taken to JFK North Hospital, West Palm Beach. It is not clear how or what extent the teens were hurt. Napier was seen in court Wednesday morning with a bruised right eye. Pettis was covered with a bandage and had his arm wrapped up
Police said that Pettis drove away. According to court records, he has an open case for felony marijuana-related and weapon possession charges that he received Dec. 31. His driver’s license was suspended.
According to police records, Pettis drove north towards West 36th Street and then turned onto Avenue O. The car continued on to Silver Beach Road, westwards until it reached the city limits
They didn’t work so we continued the chase to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, and on to North Military Trail. Pettis drove southbound on I-95.
Pettis exited at West Palm Beach’s Belvedere Road exit. He then drove north on I-95. Pettis continued east on Okeechobee Boulevard until he reached traffic near Australian Avenue.
According to records, the Charger drove south until its front tire burst.
Near Sixth Avenue South, the car stopped at the I-95 outside wall. Pettis and Napier fled immediately, then raised their arms. Officers stated that the teens had “began brace, tension and resist arrest”, causing officers “to use a great deal of force to get compliance.”
Witness to the chase that involved several city police cars said it was “one the most terrifying things I’ve ever seen.”
The man who requested anonymity said that the Riviera Beach Police Department had put hundreds and even hundreds of people at risk yesterday.
Rose Anne Brown, Riviera Beach police spokesperson, said that the teens were believed to be connected to a young girl’s Dec. 23 murder. She said that this decision was continuously evaluated during the chase.
According to records, Pettis is facing charges of aggravated fleeing and resisting an officer as well as moving violation. Judge Joseph Marx released Pettis from jail on another case. He will be held in county jail until his next court appearance.
According to Napier’s defense attorney, he was released on his own recognizance. Although he is being charged with violently resisting an officers, his attorney challenged the basis for the “violent.”
Pettis was cited by the state attorney as having “a terrible juvenile record.” Marx’s father said that Pettis was being targeted by police. It was harassment, he said.