TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) — A man who led police on a multistate chase last week has been charged with multiple felonies.
Court documents say on the morning of Oct. 18, Illinois police contacted the Newton County Sheriff's Office saying they had received a 911 call from a man who said he had kidnapped a child and was driving a stolen vehicle traveling on US Route 24.
The man was later identified as 30-year-old Kenneth Brown of South Milwaukee, Wisconsin. According to the mother of the child, Brown allegedly had taken the child in violation of a protective order and had stolen her van.
Newton County police located the van going east on US 24 and attempted to stop it. The van then sped away with the headlights turned off, forcing a pursuit that led to Interstate 65.
Officers observed the van heading south, speeding and weaving in and out of traffic. The van stopped briefly after having struck a median and officers were able to spot Brown holding a small child up to the window. The van took off again heading for the State Road 26 exit and striking a truck while en route.
While heading east on SR 26, Brown stopped again and officers were able to see him holding a knife to the throat of the child before he took off again in the van, eventually turning around and heading back west down the road.
Officers began trying to get around the van and box it in but ended up being struck by Brown as he sped down the road, causing enough damage to two of the squad cars to discontinue their pursuit.
Brown continued down SR 26 until reaching I-65 North where he crossed over into southbound lanes while still driving north. An officer finally managed to stop the van by forcing it into the guardrail.
Officers approached the stopped van and saw Brown holding a knife to the child's throat while keeping his head hidden behind the child. He threatened he would kill the child if the officers continued to approach.
After a short period of negotiation, Brown allowed officers to take the child through the window. He then proceeded to cut at his own throat with the knife before officers moved in and subdued him.
Brown was first taken to a local Lafayette hospital and later transferred to an Indianapolis hospital for treatment of his wounds.
The child was also taken to the hospital where officers observed marks where Brown had held the knife against its neck.
Brown was arrested after being released from the hospital. He is believed to have prior convictions in Milwaukee County for charges relating to drugs and a take and drive vehicle incident.
Brown has been charged with kidnapping, criminal confinement, intimidation, five counts of battery by means of a deadly weapon, criminal recklessness, neglect of a dependent, resisting law enforcement, criminal mischief, leaving the scene of an accident, and criminal recklessness.