RICHMOND - Virginia State Police spent Friday evening (July 4) searching for a pursuit suspect who jumped off a bridge between Colonial Heights and Petersburg.
At 5:39 p.m., a Virginia State Police Trooper was traveling along the Boulevard in Colonial Heights when he observed an equipment violation on a passing vehicle. The trooper activated his emergency lights in an attempt to stop the vehicle. The vehicle's driver refused to stop and a pursuit was initiated.
One minute later as the pursuit made its way south on Route 1, the fleeing vehicle stopped in the middle of the Martin Luther King Jr. Bridge between Colonial Heights and Petersburg. Its driver got out of the vehicle, ran to the right side of the bridge and jumped over the railing. The bridge is approximately 75 feet above the Appomattox River.
The trooper immediately called for assistance to search for the male subject. State police Med-Flight helicopter was dispatched to the scene to help search by air. State police, Petersburg Police, and Colonial Heights Police and canine teams searched along the banks of the river. Chesterfield County Fire's dive team deployed to search the river. Despite extensive search efforts over the course of the next two-and-a-half hours, the subject was not located.
Search efforts had to be terminated at dark. The Virginia State Police Search & Recovery Team returned Saturday morning to continue efforts to locate the subject.
At this time the incident remains under investigation.