A Springfield Local Schools teacher faces multiple charges after leading police on a chase through Toledo and south on I-75 after leaving what a school-district spokesman described as a "meeting with administrators" late yesterday morning.
Springfield Middle and Holland Elementary schools were locked down for about an hour while authorities looked for Louis M. Kovin, 39, of 862 Cherry Lane, Waterville, a technology teacher at the middle school who was arrested in Wood County after state troopers punctured his van's tires and it went off I-75, near State Rt. 582, and slid into a pond along the freeway.
Mr. Kovin was being held in the Lucas County jail on two counts of felonious assault, felony fleeing and eluding, reckless operation, and inducing panic.
Cynthia Beekley, Springfield schools superintendent, said Mr. Kovin met with the district's assistant superintendent about a matter "that could have been disciplinary" and became upset about the meeting's outcome.
"He tried to go back to the school, but we wanted him to go home," Ms. Beekley said. "We just didn't think it would be good for him to go into the building."
The two schools' doors were locked, and Holland police and the Lucas County Sheriff's Office were notified that Mr. Kovin was wanted for criminal trespass on school property, and his wife was telephoned to report suicidal intentions, deputies said.
Mr. Kovin's van was seen heading east on Angola Road. When a deputy pulled in behind the van as it turned north on King Road and activated his emergency lights, the van accelerated and began running red lights and stop signs as it headed north and turned east on Dorr Street.
Deputies said the van repeatedly swerved into the opposite lane, ran vehicles off the road, and three times veered toward oncoming police cars.
The van turned south on Collingwood Boulevard and entered southbound I-75.
It evaded a set of road spikes set out by Ohio Highway Patrol troopers. The van hit a second set of spikes about a mile south of the I-75/I-475 junction in Perrysburg.
Its left rear tire shedding shredded rubber, the van stayed on the freeway until just short of the Route 582 interchange in Middleton Township, where it went off the road and through a fence. Its driver tried to negotiate the embankment on the edge of a pond, but the van slid down the side. Mr. Kovin emerged from the water and was arrested, deputies said.
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