KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — What started as a traffic stop for speeding became a pursuit of an 18-year-old suspect who was later caught and the contents of a backpack he allegedly threw away during his attempt to flee were found by investigators.

The suspect, identified as Curtis Anthony Simpson Jr, 18, was arrested after a vehicle pursuit and foot pursuit and it began as a traffic stop for speeding 75 mph in a 55 mph zone along southbound Interstate 275 on Tuesday afternoon. After the officer initiated their emergency lights, the suspect did not stop and sped off to evade the officer. While doing so, the suspect struck another vehicle on the exit ramp, disabling both vehicles.

When Simpson’s vehicle came to a stop, he fled on foot down the exit ramp. A police report states while fleeing, Simpson threw a silver backpack off the bridge and continued to flee from officers. After a brief foot pursuit, officers caught up to him and took him into custody.

Officers obtained the discarded backpack and searched the crashed suspect vehicle, finding a baggie full of 14.8 grams of “a green leafy substance consistent with marijuana,” as well as a Glock 17 firearm with a 50-round drum magazine with 43 9mm bullets.

Simpson Jr. is facing the following charges:

  • Tampering with evidence
  • Possess firearm with intent to go armed
  • Possession of Schedule VI drugs (Marijuana)
  • Evading Arrest
  • Driving while license suspended
  • Financial responsibility law
  • Evading arrest w risk of death or injury
  • Speeding
  • Leaving scene of accident w property damage

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