William Blankenship III, 22, of Knox, remains at large, after he allegedly stole a police car Tuesday night, wrecked it and put it into a ditch.
Blankenship was under arrest by Kouts police on drug related charges following a traffic stop at the Family Express station at the intersection of State Road 8 and State Road 49 in Kouts. The arresting officer placed Blankenship in the back seat of the patrol car while the officer took inventory of Blankenship’s car. It was then when Blankenship allegedly got into the driver’s seat and drove from the scene.
According to reports, Blankenship used the police radio to begin a 25-minute conversation with Porter County dispatchers and police. Blankenship asked where the cigarette lighter was and where the handcuff key was kept in the car. Officers tried to convince him to turn himself in, but he didn’t.
Police found the police car submerged in a ditch near County Road 600 West and County Road 2200 South in LaPorte County and after a search of the car, all of the weapons that were in the car were recovered and the vehicle was towed to an auto repair shop in Kouts.
Police describe Blankenship as a white male, about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighing 175 pounds with black hair, brown eyes and facial hair.
Anyone with information as to Blankenship’s whereabouts is asked to call the Kouts Police Department at (219) 766-2332 or the Porter County Sheriff’s Department at (219) 477-3000.