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Traffic stop turns into police chase, crash in Springfield

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What began as a traffic stop of a suspected drunken driver on Interstate 5 on Saturday night turned into a high-speed police chase that ended when the suspect crashed into an ARCO freeway sign in north Springfield, according to Springfield police.

Kayse Marie Bosarge, 27, of Springfield, was taken to PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend with non-life threatening injuries, including  several fractures and contusions. Bosarge was charged on suspicion of attempting to elude police with a vehicle and driving under the influence, among other charges, police said.

The incident began around 10 p.m. Saturday when a Springfield police officer attempted to pull over a suspected intoxicated driver on Highway 126 in Springfield. Police said Bosarge, in a Toyota Camry, continued onto I-5 northbound, finally stopping beneath the Harlow Road overpass. When the officer got out of his car, Bosarge allegedly fled north at a high speed and took the eastbound exit onto Randy Papé Beltline. The officer pursued her until she turned onto northbound Gateway Street and crashed into the large gas station sign that’s visible from the freeway, police said.

Springfield police Sgt George Crolly said the chase lasted about a minute before the crash.

“She was running on two flat tires at that point, seemed intoxicated and ran straight into this large sign post,” Crolly said. “The big post itself didn’t budge, and the post went pretty deep into the car.”

Impact with the sign post pushed the engine into the driver’s compartment, igniting a small fire. Eugene Springfield Fire medics pulled Bosarge from the vehicle, police said.

Crolly said Bosarge is lucky she didn’t sustain more injuries, considering the nature of the crash.

“It’s unfortunate that she ran but it’s better than her crashing into a car full of people,” he said.

Crolly said the officer made the right choice to pursue Bosarge. Sometimes officers decide to not pursue suspects in vehicles if there’s a danger to the public, which can depend on the time of day, traffic and speeds, he said.

Crolly said the number of alcohol-related calls the department received Saturday was unusual.

“There were a lot of out-of-control people last night,” Crolly said. “It’s something I haven’t seen at this level in quite a while.”

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