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Driver allegedly switches seats after police chase

Delaware News Desk
Milford Beacon
Milford Beacon

Delaware State Police arrested an Ellendale man after a pursuit led to the discovery of drugs and a weapon.

The incident occurred around 1:25 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 3, when a trooper observed a gray Honda traveling southbound on Route 13, approaching Elks Lodge Road in Seaford, at a high rate of speed. A traffic stop was initiated but the operator fled, continuing to travel at a high rate of speed and violating multiple traffic laws. The vehicle eventually came to a stop behind an out building at a private residence in the 20000 block of Sanfilippo Road. 

The trooper made contact with a 30-year-old Harrington woman who was in the driver’s seat, but during the pursuit, the trooper had observed a male operating the vehicle. The original driver, 25-year-old Qualeel Westcottwas now seated in the passengers seat. Also in the vehicle were three children, ages seven, four and three, that were not properly restrained.

Wescott’s license was revoked and he is a person prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition. 

While speaking with him, the trooper observed signs of impairment and a DUI investigation ensued.  

A search was conducted and found in the vicinity of the vehicle and found a loaded silver Bersa Thunder 380 with five rounds in the clip, about 1.7 grams of crack cocaine and about a gram of marijuana.

Westcott and the Harrington woman were taken into custody. The woman was charged with misdemeanors and released on unsecured bond.

Westcott was charged with possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, disregarding a police officer signal, three counts of endangering the welfare of a child, possession of a controlled or counterfeit substance, DUI, third-degree criminal trespassing, reckless driving, driving while suspended or revoked, possession of marijuana and other traffic violations. He was committed to Sussex Correctional Institution on $10,106 secured bond.