Handcuffed Indiana Man Drives Off in Police Car

Jan 11, 2012 2:26pm
ap mugshot william francis blankenship tk 120111 wblog Handcuffed Indiana Man Drives Off in Police Car

William Francis Blankenship, 22, is seen in an undated photo provided by the Porter County Sheriff's Dept. (Porter County Sheriff's Dept./AP Photo)

An Indiana man is on the run from police after stealing the police car he was placed on Tuesday and driving away while handcuffed.

William Blankenship III, 22, of Knox, Ind., was taken into custody on probable cause for drug-related offenses during a traffic stop in Kouts, Ind., Tuesday night. Blankenship was placed in handcuffs and in the patrol car while the officer searched Blankenship’s vehicle, but Blankenship somehow took control of the vehicle and fled the scene, according to the Porter County Sheriff’s Department.

While driving away, Blankenship used the police radio to ask about a key for the handcuffs on his hands and inquire about a cigarette lighter in the car.

Authorities searched overnight for Blankenship and the vehicle, stopping all other Kouts police cruisers from patrolling the roadways to find the missing car. At around 6:30 this morning, the vehicle was located in a drainage ditch, abandoned and submerged in water. All of the firearms were accounted for, police said.

Blankenship, who is about 5’10 and 175 pounds with black hair and facial hair, is still on the loose, police confirmed today. Police are asking members of the public with information to call 219-766-2332.

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