A man arrested recently following a high speed chase that left a Lee County sheriff’s deputy hospitalized was arrested in 2017 by police in Hope Mills after an incident that was virtually identical to the one that took place Monday.
37-year-old Cory Fennell of Fayetteville is in custody at the Lee County Jail after a high speed chase that began near Deep River when Deputy Jeff Oldham stopped his car while investigating a call about a suspicious vehicle. Fennell is accused of attempting to run over Oldham, which led Oldham to fire his weapon into Fennell’s vehicle and then give chase.
The pursuit ended in downtown Sanford – some six miles away – when Oldham crashed his patrol vehicle into a storefront at 128 S. Steele St. Oldham suffered serious injuries in the crash and was airlifted to UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill, while Fennell is reported to have abandoned his vehicle not far away.
He was eventually located hiding “under a house” on Chisholm Street.
The Sanford Herald published a story in today’s edition (as of this writing, it had not been published on their website) detailing Fennell’s lengthy criminal history as well as the fact that he was apparently wanted for absconding his parole, giving a hint as to his motive for fleeing from Oldham on Monday morning. The Herald’s report also indicates that Fennell had spend time in prison, mostly on drug charges.
But a post on the Facebook page for the Hope Mills, North Carolina Police Department shows that Fennell was taken into custody after a 2017 incident that mirrors Monday’s almost perfectly:
According to the post, Fennell was stopped in the early morning hours of June 13, 2017 after a police officer in Hope Mills saw his vehicle “weaving off the roadway.” After the officer asked Fennell for his license and registration, Fennell is reported to have “acted like he was trying to locate the requested items when he put the vehicle in drive and sped away.”
“The officer pursued the vehicle on Rockfish Road to Deaver Circle and then onto Hackberry Drive. where the driver stopped the vehicle and fled from the scene,” the post continues. “After a canvas search of the area by responding Officers, the driver was located hiding in the closet of an apartment in the 6200 block of Hackberry Drive.”
The charges resulting from that situation – mostly drug violations – are presumably the reason Fennell was on and had absconded from probation on Monday night. His bail in this case is set at $350,000 secured.
Oldham remains hospitalized in Chapel Hill.