After gunshots report, 100-mph chase led police from Pittsfield to Williamstown

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PITTSFIELD — An Albany, N.Y., man faces multiple charges after allegedly leading police on a pre-dawn chase from Pittsfield to Williamstown early Saturday that at times reached speeds that exceeded 100 mph.

Jerell D. Dukes, 35, was arrested after officers used spike strips to bring the vehicle to a halt, police said.

Officers were dispatched to the area of Dower Square and Wahconah Street about 2:48 a.m. Saturday for a report of gunshots.

An anonymous caller told police there was a loud disturbance and fighting in the area before the shots rang out.

The city's ShotSpotter gunshot alert system recorded about six shots fired, police said.

Police had blocked off parts of the area to prevent people leaving the scene before an investigation was completed. No further information was available about the shots fired call.

Police were alerted that a 2001 silver Infiniti I-30 with New York plates was fleeing the area of Dower Square at a high rate of speed after having struck another vehicle.

The Infiniti was traveling north on Wahconah toward North Street at speeds over 75 mph, hit a curb while taking a left at the intersection of North and Wahconah and continued north.

Pittsfield police, in pursuit with lights and sirens activated, were given permission to continue the chase as the car left the city limits on its way into Lanesborough.

The pursuit continued through Lanesborough as the Infiniti reached speeds in excess of 100 mph, police said.

State police, as well as the North Adams and Williamstown police departments were notified of the chase.

Williamstown Police deployed spike strips, which burst the Infiniti's right front tire, bringing the vehicle to a stop on Cold Spring Road in Williamstown.

Dukes was identified as the operator of the vehicle and arrested. Three other occupants were arrested and charged with disturbing the peace for allegedly being involved in the disturbance.

He pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Monday to charges of leaving the scene of property damage, failure to stop for police, reckless operation of a motor vehicle, speeding in excess of a special regulation (104 mph in a 55 mph zone) and disturbing the peace.

Judge Charles W. Groce set Dukes' bail at $1,000 and set a date of Sept. 25 for a pretrial hearing.

Reach staff writer Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249 or @BobDunn413 on Twitter


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