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Suspect avoids drug sting, takes off

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By Christopher Brooke, Reporter

HILLSVILLE — A suspect in an investigation fled the scene of a drug buy set up near Hillsville Thursday, leading officers from five law enforcement agencies on a chase through the Twin Counties, authorities say.

Donald Scott Vaughan, 52, of Galax faces multiple charges as a result.

The investigation — and the chase — led to charges of felony eluding police, two counts of distribution of a schedule II drug, reckless driving and using a police scanner to evade law enforcement, according to information from Carroll Sheriff Warren Manning.

These charges arise after an eight-month investigation by the Carroll County Sheriff's Office, the Twin County Drug Task Force and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

The Claytor Lake Drug Task Force — which consists of the Virginia State Police, the Pulaski County Sheriff's Office, Pulaski and Dublin police departments — "developed information and arranged a drug transaction with Vaughan at the Exit 14 McDonald's" off Interstate 77 on April 15, the sheriff said. "Vaughan left the area before the transaction."

But Carroll Deputy Bobby Lyons caught up with the suspect's vehicle and observed him passing another on a double solid yellow line while going at a high rate of speed, the news release said. Vaughan refused to stop for Lyons after the deputy activated his lights and siren.

Personnel from the Hillsville Police Department, Virginia State Police, Grayson County Sheriff's Office and Galax Police Department assisted the Carroll deputies.

"The chase ended on Sherwood Road in the River Hill area of the county with Vaughan fleeing on foot into the woods," the news release said. "A tracking canine with Dublin Police Department was on the scene and ran a track, locating Vaughan hiding in the woods a short distance away."

He was taken into custody without incident.

Later, authorities obtained a search warrant for Vaughan's home on Spring Trace Lane and discovered more than three ounces of methamphetamine and a gun, Manning said. Several hundred dollars in cash were confiscated, along with Vaughan's Volkswagon Jetta.

Vaughan is being held in the New River Valley Regional Jail without bond, pending an appearance in the Carroll County General District Court.