Liverpool man throws shotgun out of vehicle during police chase

A Liverpool man was arrested after fleeing police during a traffic stop and tossing a shotgun from his vehicle during the pursuit. A passenger bailed out of the vehicle during the chase and has not been located.

Syracuse Police say they stopped a 2000 Chevy Venture van that had only one working headlight in the 300 block of Ellis Street around 1:55 a.m. Monday.

Police attempted to stop the vehicle, but it sped off. Police pursued the vehicle and saw the occupants throw what appeared to be a rifle from the vehicle on the 1000 block of Westmoreland Avenue.

Police say the vehicle continued to the 1200 block of Westmoreland Avenue where a man bailed from the vehicle and ran.

The vehicle continued driving until it reached the intersection of Nottingham Road and Tecumseh Road. The vehicle stopped and the driver got out and engaged officers in an attempt to avoid apprehension.

Police say the driver actively fought with police officers, but officers were able to take him into custody after a short struggle.

The driver was identified as 35-year-old Willie Strong.

Officers checked the 1000 block of Westmoreland Avenue and located a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun that had been thrown from the moving vehicle.

Strong was charged with the felonies of criminal possession of a weapon, assault of a police officer, and the misdemeanors of reckless driving, resisting arrest, aggravated unlicensed operation, and several traffic tickets.

Strong was lodged in the Justice Center and is expected to be arraigned Monday in Syracuse City Criminal Court.

The passenger who fled on foot has not been apprehended.