Update: Charles Boyd pleaded guilty to possession of meth, resisting law enforcement and criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon on May 4, 2017. He was sentenced to 2,190 days in jail.
Previous story below:
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- An Indianapolis man is facing numerous criminal charges after allegedly leading police on a high speed chase. The dangerous pursuit ended in a crash over the weekend.
A search of court records shows the suspect, Charles Boyd, has had dozens of encounters with law enforcement and has faced at least 10 criminal charges in Marion County dating back to 2000.
The most recent run-in started on East Minnesota when an IMPD officer spotted a suspect he knew had active warrants for his arrest. When the officer tried to pull the suspect over, a chase ensued.
Charles Boyd is accused of ramming into a police squad car before losing control and crashing, and then fighting with police until he was pepper sprayed.
According to court records, during the chase Boyd was seen “flipping people off as he was driving, as well as laughing and smiling” and after his capture prosecutors say he “admitted to officers that he had swallowed a baggie of heroine.”
One local attorney says the state’s laws simply don’t work to keep offenders like that off the streets.
“I would call someone like this a habitual petty offender,” said attorney Jack Crawford.
Attorney Crawford used that description because exactly one year ago in April. Boyd was charged with criminal recklessness for speeding away from an officer and crashing his car while out on active warrants.
Then just weeks later, Boyd was charged again with resisting law enforcement following another police chase.
“This is someone who is just a problem for the system. He keeps breaking the law,” said Crawford.
While Indiana does have habitual offender laws for suspects that repeatedly find themselves in court, Crawford says those laws are mostly used for violent crimes like armed robbery, because the laws take time to prosecute and often results in a minimal increase in penalty.
“A petty offender can be found to be a habitual offender, but he only gets two extra years if he’s found to be a habitual offender,” said Crawford. “It’s very cumbersome. Sometimes the habitual offender violation takes longer than the trial itself.”
For his part, Charles Boyd has been repeatedly convicted of theft, resisting arrest and drug possession, but has not been charged as a habitual offender.
“People like this always seem to slip through the cracks. They’re always doing something illegal and getting back in court on minor offenses, but the habitual offender law doesn’t cure that problem,” said Crawford.
For the moment, Boyd remains behind bars at the Marion County jail. He’s being held on 11 different criminal charges.