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Car chase sends sheriff’s deputy to hospital
December 30, 2010 Jerry Purvis   
A high-speed pursuit through Scotts Bluff County last week sent the suspect to county jail and a sheriff’s deputy to the hospital.

Deputy Lanny Hanks was admitted to Regional West Medical Center on Dec. 23 following the pursuit, but was released on Christmas Day.

The suspect, 46-year-old William Kinser of Hemingford, was booked into the Scotts Bluff County Detention Facility and held on $41,000 bond.

According to County Sheriff Jim Lawson, Deputy Hanks attempted to stop a speeding vehicle north of the Scottsbluff sugar factory at about 5:45 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 23. The driver fled north on Sugar Factory Road.

“Within about five minutes, he ends up at County Road A, right at the Sioux County line,” Lawson said. “That’s where the chase ended, in an icy field next to the Pathfinder irrigation canal.”

Kisner had attempted to get away from Deputy Hanks by driving through two small ditches and a barbed wire fence. By that time additional deputies and state patrol troopers had responded.

In trying to get back to Scottsbluff, the suspect’s vehicle collided with Hanks’ car, causing the sheriff’s vehicle to slide head first into the canal.

Hanks got out of his vehicle and climbed up the canal embankment to chase the fleeing suspect. That’s when a Good Samaritan happened along. As Brandon Vardeman saw Hank’s vehicle go over the embankment and into the canal, he jumped out of his own car to help.

During a foot pursuit, Kinser took a couple of swings at Vardeman before he was tackled. Kinser had to be tasered by Deputy Hanks after the suspect continued to resist arrest.

Kinser was arraigned on Monday in Scotts Bluff County Court and charged with, among other things, second offense driving while intoxicated, driving under suspension, resisting arrest and willful reckless driving.

His preliminary hearing has been set for Jan. 5.

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