Man accused of reckless driving, resisting law enforcement following police chase

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. - A man was arrested for reckless driving and resisting law enforcement after allegedly leading police on a chase in South Bend, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Brandon Johnson, 31, was arrested for reckless driving, knowingly or intentionally operating a motor vehicle without ever receiving a license, and two counts of resisting law enforcement.

At 3:30 a.m. on Sunday, an officer with the South Bend Police Department was patrolling south on Olive Street, south of Lincolnway, when he saw a black Toyota Avalon driving north on Olive Street without its headlights on, reports said.

The officer saw the Toyota make two quick turns, pick up speed, and make its way onto eastbound Frederickson Street.  

The officer turned on his emergency lights, at which point the Toyota turned north onto Olive Street and east onto Prast Boulevard, ignoring stop signs at Elmer, Huey, and Johnson streets, according to reports.

The vehicle continued through an alleyway on Prast Boulevard, after Johnson Street, and came to a T intersection for another alley.

The driver of the Toyota then lost control of the vehicle and it became wedged between a building and a power pole in the 1900 block of Lincolnway West, reports said.

The driver then got out of the vehicle and started running north toward Lincolnway, police reports said.

After nearly being hit by a truck while crossing Lincolnway, the driver led the officer through several backyards before being caught in an alley headed back toward Lincolnway, according to police.

He was eventually identified as Brandon Johnson.

Johnson has previously been convicted of resisting law enforcement using a vehicle.

In 2021, Johnson was convicted through St. Joseph County of operating a motor vehicle never having received a license.

Johnson is being held on a $1,000 cash bond.

He is due back in court on December 13.

UPDATE: In March 2023, Johnson was sentenced after pleading guilty to resisting law enforcement as part of a plea agreement. As part of the plea, his remaining charges were dismissed. Johnson was sentenced to 18 months.

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