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Riverhead woman who led police on wild chase indicted on 15 felonies

Rasheeda Brown

A Riverhead woman who reportedly escaped custody and led Riverhead and Southampton police on two high-speed chases last month has been indicted on a slew of felony and misdemeanor charges, including grand larceny, escaping custody, possession of stolen property, vehicle theft, and reckless endangerment, according to online court records.

Rasheeda Brown, 30, allegedly stole two vehicles during her run from the cops on Sept. 17. The second alleged theft occurred while she was still in handcuffs, having escaped from Peconic Bay Medical Center after her initial arrest.

[Related: Riverhead woman leads police on chase, escapes custody at PBMC]

[Related: State police arrest two more people following car chase]

The chase began late that Saturday morning, when Southampton Town police received a call about a suspicious vehicle on Old Quogue Road, police said. The vehicle, driven by Ms. Brown, fled the scene, leading police on a chase westbound on Sunrise Highway, up to Route 111 and onto the Long Island Expressway into Riverhead. Police pursued her into the Riverhead Home Depot parking lot after she crashed into a vehicle, and a trooper used his patrol car to protect pedestrians in a crosswalk, police said.

Ms. Brown reportedly failed to stop and smashed into the trooper’s vehicle. She was arrested at the scene and taken to Peconic Bay Medical Center after she complained of chest pain following the crash, Capt. Bill Hulse said.

While receiving treatment, Ms. Brown was unsupervised by police and made her escape, stealing a Toyota Camry from the nearby TJ Maxx parking lot, according to police. State police said she drove the stolen vehicle back to her home on Mill Road, where the owner of the house, 47-year-old Wallace Conklin, cut off her handcuffs.

State and Riverhead Town police searched the area for Ms. Brown, eventually spotting her on Mill Road. Again, she led police on a chase before crashing into a Jeep Wrangler that was towing a SeaDoo jet-ski. Ms. Brown attempted to steal the Jeep but was stopped by police and arrested again.

Incredibly, no injuries beyond Ms. Brown’s chest pain and minor scratches on one trooper’s hand were reported as a result of the chases.

After an intensive investigation, Ms. Brown was found to be in possession of numerous identification cards — including cards from banks, Sam’s Club and BJ’s Wholesale Club — that police believe were stolen, Capt. Hulse said.

She has been charged with 12 counts of felony possession of stolen property; three counts of felony fourth-degree grand larceny, including vehicle theft; felony second-degree escape; two misdemeanor counts for both reckless endangerment and reckless driving; two counts of misdemeanor unlawfully fleeing police; two counts of misdemeanor unauthorized use of a motor vehicle; misdemeanor attempted grand larceny; and a handful of traffic infractions for speeding and crossing a highway divider.

As of presstime, according to a jail clerk, Ms. Brown remained in police custody on bail. She’s due to be arraigned on the charges Wednesday in Central Islip court, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office.

Mr. Conklin — who cut off Ms. Brown’s handcuffs — was arrested on charges of fourth-degree criminal facilitation, fifth-degree conspiracy and third-degree hindering prosecution, police said. He was released on his own recognizance and is due back in court on Oct. 17, according to town court officials.

Another woman in the house, Tanya Schultheis, 32, was also arrested after police found she had pocketbooks from a vehicle Ms. Brown had stolen during the chase, Capt. Hulse said.

Ms. Schultheis was charged with felony possession of stolen property; her case is being heard by a grand jury for possible indictment, according to the town court.

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Photo: Rasheeda Brown