Multiple charges filed against suspect involved in high-speed chase

INDIAHOMA, Okla. – Charges were filed Thursday for the high-speed chase that took place in Comanche County Tuesday morning.

The Comanche County Sheriff's Department says the chase started in Indiahoma when a deputy attempted to pull Michael Johnston over for a traffic stop.  He took off and started a chase that reached speeds of 90 mph, with him ramming a deputy's car twice.  The district attorney's office filed nine charges against Johnston today.

Some of Johnston's charges include possession of methamphetamine, two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon and running through a road block, all of which are felony charges.  His bond has been set at $200,000.  Comanche County Sheriff Kenny Stradley says the punishments that come with Johnston's actions could have been avoided.

Tuesday morning's high speed chase ended with a deputy being injured and Johnston surrendering in a pond.  Stradley says Johnston had just been released from jail Monday.  He says if he had just pulled over it would be a much different situation.

"He did have an ankle monitor on at the time of all this and he would have had a driving under suspension, but he wouldn't be in as near as much trouble as he is in now," said Stradley.

Stradley says Johnston put his life, the life of his deputy, a Cache Police officer and other innocent bystanders in jeopardy.  He says Tuesday morning's fog added another layer of danger to the already troubling situation.

"We would not have continued on if he wouldn't have rammed our car.  At that point, when he rammed our car, we knew that we better get him shutdown or he is liable to run over somebody else.  That's why we had to go on and keep pursuing him," said Stradley.

Stradley says Johnston's charges and his six-figure bond should send a message to other would-be criminals who may try to run from a traffic stop.

"If you're in a little bit of trouble, it's better a little bit than a whole bunch.  He could have run over somebody and killed him and then he really would have lots of problems."

Court records show that Johnston has been charged with multiple driving offenses, including a DUI in 2010 which resulted in his license being revoked.  He received two driving while suspended citations; one in 2010 and one just last week.

In regards to the rest of Johnston's nine charges, there is also reckless driving, possession of paraphernalia, felony eluding, defective equipment and a driving under suspension charge.