UPDATE: Neighbors on edge with manhunt, high-speed chase of ‘dangerous’ fugitive

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PUTNAM COUNTY, W. Va. (WSAZ) -- UPDATE 2/6/18 @ 6 p.m.
A high-speed chase of a federal fugitive on Interstate 64 touched Cabell, Mason and Putnam counties as speeds reached more than 130 mph. His car wrecked in Mason County, just 2 miles north of Hannan High School.

Authorities said the man they're looking for is Eric Bolton. He's 40 years old, 6 feet 1 inch tall and weighs about 200 pounds. He’s still on the run and should be considered armed and dangerous.

The hunt was on all day long for him. He’s wanted on a federal probation violation.

Deputies said his car wrecked right into the creek along Ashton-Upland Road at Palestine Road, about 14 miles north of Milton.

Our camera was there as guns were drawn as deputies arrived. A K-9 followed the scent for some distance, but eventually lost it.

Carol Jordan lives less than a mile away.

"It's too close to home," she said.

She could watch as her relatives, who live next door, were being warned by authorities to be on the lookout, part of a massive response Tuesday by multiple agencies.

It all began as troopers tried to pull Bolton over in Winfield after a license plate reader picked up his vehicle.

They said he sped off down state Route 34, got onto I-64, hitting speeds of 137 miles an hour at one point. He drove so fast police didn't realize he had gotten off at the Milton exit before they went miles down the highway into Huntington.

So after his car was spotted, all hands were on deck, especially the school not far away. A bus carrying students even got a special escort through the area.

Donnie Chapman was one of the drivers slowed by a tow truck pulling Bolton’s car out of the creek.

"Every holler I looked up, I seen police cars looking," he said. “I’m OK. I live in Ona so I have a ways to go.

Meanwhile, Jordan got the news from the WSAZ app.

"I was just so hoping it wasn't on this road," she said with a smile.

But it's too late for that. Now, her hope is that he’s arrested before night falls.

"I don't want to be up here at night," she said.

Because even with a gun and a conceal carry permit, "I won't go to sleep until he's caught."

We can tell you this is the same Eric Bolton who led police on a high-speed chase in October 2008 and even threw money out the window as he was driving. It happened after he realized he was selling drugs to an undercover informant. He pleaded guilty a few months later.

Authorities tried to pick Bolton up on a probation violation Monday night at his home on Fletcher Road near Teays Valley, but he was not home.

Meanwhile, U.S. Marshals tell us the current violation is connected to a federal drug charge from 1995.

According to court documents, Bolton was initially sentenced to 18 months in prison and six years of supervised release on March 26, 2009. But the supervised release was revoked on Jan. 8, 2015 and he was sentenced to three years of prison with four years of supervised release.

That supervised release began on May 10, 2017.

According to authorities, Bolton tested positive for marijuana one week later on May 17 and admitted he smoked one joint on May 10. They also say that probation officers were unable to locate him since August and September.



ORIGINAL STORY 2/6/18
A man considered armed and dangerous and wanted by federal agents escaped police Tuesday during a three-county pursuit.

Putnam County Sheriff's deputies say Eric Bolton is wanted by U.S. Marshals.

State police attempted to pull over a black BMW Tuesday morning in Winfield near the Tudors on state Route 817.

Deputies say Bolton then took off on state Route 34 at a high rate of speed.

According to deputies, Bolton then got on Interstate 64 at the Teays Valley exit.

The Hurricane Police Chief says Bolton was going 137 mph when he passed the Hurricane exit.

Law enforcement officials believe Bolton crossed into Cabell County and got off at the Milton exit.

The Hurricane Police Chief tells WSAZ some of the officers didn't know at the time that he got off at Milton, so they continued the pursuit past the 29th Street exit.

Deputies say investigators in Mason County have located the vehicle near Johns Creek on Ashton Upland Road where it was crashed. That is near Hannan High School. Investigators are now in that area looking for the suspect.

The car has since been removed from the scene.

Bolton, 40, is described as 6 feet 1 and 200 pounds. He has brown eyes and black hair.

U.S. Marshals say Bolton is wanted for violation of his federal supervised release conditions (probation) stemming from and 1995 federal narcotic charge.

Putnam County deputies believe Bolton should be considered armed and dangerous.

West Virginia State Police, Cabell Sheriff's Department, Hurricane Police and Milton Police were all involved in the chase.

Anyone with information about Bolton's whereabouts is asked to call 800-873-0444 or 816-267-3230.

Keep checking WSAZ.com and WSAZ mobile for the latest information.




 
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