FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – A 31-year-old man, believed to be formerly of North Carolina, was arrested by the Arkansas State Police this morning following a pursuit in Franklin County along Interstate 40.

Brian Starnes is charged with felony fleeing, aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, driving with a suspended license, and refusal to submit to arrest. 

He has been incarcerated at the Franklin County Jail.

An Arkansas Highway Police Officer (ArDOT) contacted Arkansas State Police about 10:35 a.m. requesting assistance with a traffic stop along I-40 (westbound) at the 36-mile marker.  Black spray paint covered the windows of the vehicle Starnes was driving.

When a state trooper approached the stopped vehicle, Starnes accelerated the car, re-entered a traffic lane, and knocked the trooper to the ground.  The chase continued for about five miles when a precision intervention technique was executed forcing the vehicle being driven by Starnes off the roadway.

Starnes regained control of the car and returned to the interstate driving east in the west lanes.

State police blocked traffic to avoid a collision and troopers were eventually able to force the car off the highway about 7 miles from Ozark. 

Starnes initially resisted troopers attempting to take him into custody.

Emergency medical personnel summoned to the scene examined Starnes and the state troopers. None had sustained any injuries requiring medical treatment.