Man accused of leading deputies on chase in a U-Haul caught in South Daytona

He was booked into the Volusia Jail

FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla.***UPDATE: 8:01 p.m. 4/10/2019***

The Flagler County Sheriff's Office said Justin Blake was found in South Daytona around 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

He was booked into the Volusia Jail and will be transported to Flagler County to face his charges.

He is being charged with:

  • aggravated assault on law enforcement officer
  • resisting without violence
  • stalking
  • driving while license canceled, suspended or revoked 
  • resisting an officer without violence
  • flee at high speed
  • domestic battery.

More charges could be added.


Flagler County deputies said they're looking for a man who led them on a chase in a U-Haul Tuesday night.

The incident began when a woman reported that Justin Blake, 24, had been following her for months, even across state lines, and she got scared when he showed up in a U-Haul at her location, according to the report.

Blake had made statements to the victim's friends that he would do anything to get to her, the affidavit said.

Deputies said the victim tried to hide in a McDonald's while she called a friend to pick her up but Blake saw her and came toward her. As the victim was trying to get into her friend's car, Blake grabbed her arm and pulled her out from the vehicle as she yelled for him to stop, the report said.

"He accosted her and she then fled on foot, hid in the McDonald's nearby. He found her in there, she had called a friend to come get her. She then left McDonald's and was trying to get in the friend's car when he started assaulting her and tried dragging her out of the car," Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly said.

The victim said she was eventually able to get back into her friend's vehicle and call 911.

Deputies said that when they arrived, Blake ran across State Road 100, through a McDonald's parking lot, past a car wash and through a wood line, which is where authorities stopped chasing him.

Surveillance was conducted on the U-Haul, which had Blake's small dog inside, in case Blake returned. Shortly before 9 p.m. he did return to the vehicle, according to the report.

Blake ignored commands to exit the vehicle and instead drove straight toward the deputy, even as one of the tires deflated due to the stop sticks that had been placed, the affidavit said.

"He was ordered out. He put it in reverse, ran over the stop sticks and  then put it in forward drive and came at one of my deputies. The deputy had to basically jump out of the way," Staly said.

Deputies said they followed Blake as he drove the U-Haul on State Road 100 at speeds close to 65 mph until he stopped the vehicle on a median and ran into a wooded pasture.

The foot pursuit came to an end when deputies encountered a herd of aggressive cattle that would not allow them to pass. 

As of Wednesday afternoon, Blake had not been located. Deputies said he's wanted on charges of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, stalking, operating a vehicle without a license, resisting an officer without violence, domestic violence and fleeing and eluding.

"We will eventually find him. I hope it's sooner rather than later. It could have ended much more serious and much more violent. So, fortunately the victim is safe and we just need to get him," Staly said.

U-Haul officials told authorities that the truck was not rented to Blake. It's unclear to whom it was rented.

Anyone with information concerning Blake's whereabouts is asked to call the Flagler County Sheriff's Office at 386-313-4911.

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