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JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. – Two people are in jail following a pursuit on rural roadways Sunday night. In apparent attempts to hinder Jackson County Sheriff's Office (JCSO) deputies, the driver swerved toward oncoming vehicles, ramming one JCSO patrol car. At one point, the passenger threw a bicycle into the roadway from the moving vehicle.
The suspect driver, Christopher Michael Rock, 35, is lodged in the Jackson County jail on the following charges: attempting to elude police in a vehicle, attempting to elude police on foot, reckless driving, recklessly endangering another person, failure to perform the duties of a driver when property is damaged (hit and run), first degree criminal trespass, and two counts of first degree criminal mischief. Rock’s bail was set at $47,000 at lodging, plus a no-bail hold for a parole violation.
The passenger, Susan Anne Medcalf, 49, was lodged in jail on charges of first degree criminal trespass and five counts of recklessly endangering another person. Medcalf’s bail at lodging was $30,000 plus a no-bail hold for a parole violation.
On October 14, 2018, at 8:27 p.m., a Jackson County Sheriff’s Office deputy patrolling the area of Bellinger Lane and Minear Road attempted to stop a suspicious vehicle that had been parked at a church after hours. The white Dodge Caravan immediately eluded the deputy. The driver, later identified as Rock, swerved toward oncoming cars, including law enforcement vehicles arriving in the area. Deputies lost sight of the van in a nearby neighborhood.
Another deputy spotted the van driving on Arnold Lane. Rock again failed to stop, eluding deputies toward Central Point. The van struck the front of a JCSO patrol vehicle at the intersection of Hanley Road and Rossanley Drive. The patrol car received minor damage, but the deputy was not injured.
The vehicle continued toward Old Stage Road, then to Scenic Road. The passenger, later identified as Medcalf, threw a bicycle into the roadway from the moving vehicle. Deputies were able to avoid the hazard.
The vehicle finally stopped when Rock drove off Gold Ray Road and unsuccessfully tried to cross nearby railroad tracks. Both occupants fled on foot from the disabled vehicle.
Deputies located Medcalf a short distance away and took her into custody. JCSO K9 Titan tracked Rock to a hiding place in the bushes nearby. Rock was taken into custody without further incident. Nobody was injured. The van caused minor damage to the railroad tracks and had to be towed from the scene.
The total distance covered was approximately 19 miles, lasting approximately 24 minutes. At different points in the incident, JCSO was assisted by personnel from Medford Police, Phoenix Police, Jacksonville Police, Central Point Police, and the Oregon State Police.