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  • WJHL

    Woman arrested after pursuit, standoff that shut down I-81 in Kingsport

    By Slater Teague,

    27 days ago

    KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — A woman is facing a slew of charges after a pursuit ended in a crash and standoff that shut down Interstate 81 in Kingsport.

    According to a preliminary crash report from the Tennessee Highway Patrol, state troopers attempted to stop a speeding Jeep Grand Cherokee on Interstate 26 in Johnson City, but the driver, identified as 30-year-old Ja’Necqua A. Releford of Tennessee, fled and a pursuit ensued.

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    The pursuit continued onto I-81 North where the Jeep crashed into the cable barrier just north of the I-26/I-81 interchange, disabling the vehicle across both lanes.

    According to the THP, Releford refused to get out of the vehicle, became non-cooperative, and claimed to be armed.
    Traffic backed up along Interstate 81 North (Photo: WJHL)

    The THP, along with the Kingsport Police Department and Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, was able to take Releford into custody after negotiations.

    Releford was taken to a hospital for treatment of injuries.

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    The highway patrol charged Releford with felony evading arrest, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, driving under the influence, driving on a suspended license, and speeding.

    Both directions of I-81 were closed as a result of the incident but have since reopened. Northbound traffic was diverted onto I-26 while southbound vehicles were diverted onto Fort Henry Drive.

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

    For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to WJHL | Tri-Cities News & Weather.

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