Man swallows handful of pills after police chase in stolen car, deputies say

Driver taken to hospital before jail

Photo does not have a caption

ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – A man swallowed a handful of pills and nearly overdosed after deputies had to use Stop Sticks to stop him from driving erratically on Interstate 4, according to the Seminole County Sheriff's Office.

A maroon Dodge Magnum was reported stolen from Orlando around 1:30 p.m. and was spotted driving recklessly at speeds close to 100 mph on I-4 west near State Road 436 in Altamonte Springs, authorities said.

Deputies stopped the vehicle, but the driver, identified Friday afternoon as 40-year-old Christopher McHaffie, would not exit the car, authorities said. McHaffie instead reached for the center counsel, causing deputies to believe that he was reaching for a weapon, according to a news release.

Video of the takedown is available above. Viewers should be warned that it contains nudity.

Instead, McHaffie pulled out a large quantity of pills and swallowed them, deputies said. Fearing the man might have overdosed, deputies broke the windows of the car to try to provide him with medical assistance, officials said.

Deputies used a Taser and beanbag shotgun to gain control of McHaffie so they could stop him from resisting and pull him out of the vehicle, according to a news release.

McHaffie started showing signs of an overdose once he was out of the vehicle, so deputies administered Narcan nasal spray to reverse the effects of the opioid, deputies said. He was taken to a hospital for medical treatment.

All lanes of I-4 reopened after the arrest.

A car not involved in the incident also ran over the Stop Sticks, damaging the vehicle's tires, deputies said.

Once he's released from the hospital, McHaffie will be charged with burglary, grand theft, grand theft auto, driving with a suspended license, destroying evidence, fleeing and eluding and reckless driving.

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The Orange County Sheriff's Office will investigate the stolen car case.



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Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.