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Texas man arrested in Friday chase

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A man from Austin, Texas was arrested Friday following a high speed chase with law enforcement on U.S. 380.

Robert Francis Dean, 32, was taken into custody Friday afternoon after leading law enforcement on a pursuit, which at times reached speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday in Chaves County Magistrate Court.

A woman and her 12-year-old son whose white Kia was allegedly struck by Dean sustained non-life threatening injuries during the pursuit.

At certain points, Dean was observed speeding into oncoming traffic and driving at high rates of speed alongside a semi truck and trailers that either stalled on the shoulder or were moving slowly, the complaint states.

In addition to one count of reckless driving, Dean is charged with two counts each of aggravated fleeing law enforcement and aggravated battery, deadly weapon.

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Dean made an initial appearance in Magistrate Court Monday, where bail was set at $150,000 cash or surety bond, electronic court records state.

The chase began Friday at about 12:50 p.m. when Roswell Police and Chaves County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a call from a motorist, who reported a Nissan driving recklessly and swerving in and out of traffic while heading east on U.S. 380, heading into Roswell.

Dean, who was allegedly driving the Nissan, was spotted in the vehicle on Second Street near Washington Avenue. Though police signaled for Dean to pull over, the complaint alleges he refused to do so.

A deputy in a marked patrol unit then joined the chase at Red Bridge and 380 East. The vehicle, at that point, was traveling at a slow rate of speed while continuing eastbound. The deputy activated his emergency lights and siren, and the male driver of the Nissan signaled for the deputy to pass him.

According to the complaint, after a few minutes, Dean pulled over. The deputy exited his unit with his sidearm drawn and ordered Dean to get out of his vehicle.

Dean then allegedly sped away, continuing east on U.S. 380. New Mexico State Police soon joined the pursuit.

Dean eventually called 911 in the midst of the pursuit, but refused a request from the dispatcher to pull over, the complaint states.

Spike strips were deployed at mile marker 173 in an attempt to immobilize the Nissan, but Dean allegedly avoided them by driving off the street.

After Dean got back on the street, deputies tried to spike the Nissan again at mile marker 191, but the vehicle again went off the road.

State Police then set up spike strips at mile marker 218, where there were guard rails running along each side of the road. Dean allegedly stopped his Nissan when he neared the strips.

According to the complaint, Dean then attempted to turn around and allegedly drove toward one of the State Police officers. The officer drew his firearm, and aimed it at Dean’s vehicle as it plowed towards him.

Charles Yslas, chief deputy with the Sheriff’s Office, who was driving a marked unit, then rammed into the driver’s side of the Nissan, moving it out of the direct line of the State Police officer, the complaint states.

Dean then allegedly drove into the westbound lane while heading east. He then collided with the white Kia, immobilizing both vehicles.

The complaint states Dean then took off on foot, heading east towards several stalled motorists. Deputies initially saw Dean holding an object believed to possibly be a gun, but they soon learned it was a flashlight.

Yslas, still in his unit at the time, then pulled up in front of Dean, exited his unit and kicked the fleeing suspect. Dean then fell to the ground. He was then tasered, handcuffed and taken into custody.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext, 301, or breakingnews@rdrnews.com

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