Shots-Fired Call Leads To I-81 Arrest

Staunton Man Faces Firearm Charges

Posted: February 16, 2013

HARRISONBURG — Harrisonburg police, responding to a report of shots fired, arrested a 23-year-old Staunton man early Saturday morning following a five-mile pursuit on Interstate 81.

Police say they received a call of shots fired in the 800 block of Port Republic Road about 2 a.m. After the 911 caller provided a description of the suspect vehicle, a 2008 Oldsmobile, Harrisonburg officers observed it exiting onto southbound I-81 at the Port Republic offramp.

According to police, the car’s female driver, whose name has yet to be released, did not stop the vehicle until she reached the Bridgewater/Mount Crawford exit at mile marker 240.

While following the suspect, an officer's cruiser was hit by a handgun that police say was thrown by the passenger
riding in the Oldsmobile. The passenger, later identified by police as Sean Michael Patty, is accused of firing the shots.

Police say a Harrisonburg officer was able to find the weapon on the interstate.

Patty, who was taken to Rockingham County Jail, is charged with reckless handling of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm and discharging a firearm inside city limits.

The driver had been charged only with a minor traffic violation as of Saturday evening, according to Sgt. Roger Knott of the Harrisonburg Police Department.

Knott said the incident remains under investigation.

Harrisonburg officers were assisted by Rockingham County sheriff's deputies and Virginia State Police troopers.

Contact Candace Sipos at 574-6275

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