PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (WCMH) — Four people from Kentucky and West Virginia were arrested Thursday afternoon after they crashed two stolen cars — a 2017 Kia Soul and a 2011 Hyundai Elantra — along U.S. Route 23 in Scioto County, according to an Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSHP) news release.
The Scioto County Sheriff’s Office notified the OSHP about passengers in two cars near Lucasville who were pointing guns out of the vehicles’ windows around 3:30 p.m. The OSHP found and chased after both cars, which took off, according to the release.
The 15-year-old driver of the stolen Kia Soul crashed into a concrete bridge while trying to turn, and a trooper arrested him after he tried to flee on foot. He was transported to the Southern Ohio Medical Center, where his injuries were determined not to be life-threatening, OSHP said.
A trooper and sheriff’s deputy chased after the Hyundai Elantra, which eventually struck another car head on after traveling left of the center median. They took the 17-year-old driver, a 19-year-old passenger, and a 22-year-old passenger into custody, according to the release.
All three were first transported to the Southern Ohio Medical Center, alongside the driver of the car that was struck, where all of their injuries were also determined not to be life-threatening.
The drivers of the vehicles were both runaway minors from Kentucky, while the other two people involved were from West Virginia. The Hyundai had been stolen from Ashland, Ky., while the Kia had been stolen from Huntington, W.Va.
OSHP said it will handle all of the charges related to this incident, which is still under investigation.
Law enforcement bodies around the country, including in Columbus, have grappled with high rates of Kia and Hyundai thefts for more than a year.