UPDATE: Man involved in Golf Road incident released from jail - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UPDATE: Man involved in Golf Road incident released from jail

Posted:
Keith Napolitano Keith Napolitano

Eau Claire (WQOW)- The man Eau Claire Police say was at the heart of a chaotic scene on Golf Road on Friday is now out of jail.

Keith Napolitano appeared in court Monday through a video conference.  He has been charged with two felonies and three misdemeanors, including eluding an officer.

Police say he threatened someone at a business on Friday afternoon and was in a hit-and-run crash a short time later. Eventually, police caught up with him near his house on Golf Road.  Officers say he tried to get into his driveway, but it was blocked by a school bus that was dropping off his son. He allegedly tried to drive off again, but police used a taser to subdue him. Police said they could smell alcohol on him. Court records show he's had other run-ins with law enforcement.

"In this particular case, the defendant has three prior convictions from earlier this year and so under the statute, that qualifies to have him charged as a repeat offender," points out Eau Claire County District Attorney Gary King.

Those convictions were all misdemeanors; including operating a firearm while intoxicated.  He was accused of firing a shot that went through the walls of his house last year. 

Months later, he was charged with hit-and-run and was convicted of two misdemeanors in that case and fined less than $500.

Napolitano posted $15,000 bond Monday and was released.  His next court appearance is scheduled for June 26th.

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Eau Claire (WQOW)- The man police say is responsible for a chaotic scene on Eau Claire's Golf Road will be in court Monday.

Eau Claire police arrested Keith Napolitano on Friday. He was taken into custody on suspicion of a number of charges, including hit and run, operating a car while intoxicated and recklessly endangering safety.

The chaos unfolded after police got a report that Napolitano was threatening another man at a business on Brackett Avenue. Police then learned of a hit and run on highway 53, which Napolitano was also allegedly involved in.  Police say when they caught up with him, he refused to pull over.  An officer had to taze him through the car window to get him to stop. That happened in front of his home on Golf Road.
 
At the same time police say they were concerned about what Napolitano's girlfriend was doing inside the home. They say she turned on the burners on a gas stove.  Neighboring homes were evacuated and police attempted to call the woman before she willingly came outside. She was taken to the hospital for a medical and mental evaluation.

Napolitano remains in jail. According to inmate records, he has a court appearance scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday morning. 

 

 

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Eau Claire (WQOW) - The man at the center of a chaotic scene on golf road Friday remains in jail Saturday night.

Eau Claire Police arrested Keith Napolitano Friday. He was arrested on suspicion of hit and run, disorderly conduct, operating a car while intoxicated, fleeing an officer, and recklessly endangering safety.

The chaos unfolded Friday after police got a report that Napolitano was threatening another man at a business on Brackett Avenue. Police then learned of a hit and run on highway 53 and 93, which Napolitano was also allegedly involved in. 

Police say when they caught up with him, he wouldn't pull over.  They had to use a taser on him through the car window to get him to stop, which happened in front of his home on golf road.

At the same time police say they were concerned about what Napolitano's girlfriend was doing inside their home on the same street. They say she turned on a stove burner and the gas. She was taken to the hospital to be mentally evaluated.  

Police say the driver of the other vehicle involved in the hit and run was transported to a local hospital with non life-threatening injuries.

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Press release from Eau Claire Police:

On June 7th, 2013 at about 3:22 PM, The Eau Claire Police Department was called to a business on Brackett Avenue in reference to threats made to an employee.

The suspect left the scene, in a vehicle, prior to police arrival. A description of the vehicle and the registration plate was obtained.

The suspect was identified as:

KEITH NAPOLITANO

3631 Golf Rd.

Eau Claire, WI

52 years old

At 4:01 PM, The Eau Claire Communications Center received a call of a motor vehicle crash in the southbound lane of Business Highway 53 just north of State Highway 93 at which time the striking vehicle fled the scene. Further information revealed that the striking vehicle matched the description of the vehicle driven by Napolitano. Information was then received that the striking vehicle exited onto Golf Road.

Three Eau Claire Police squads were driving eastbound on Golf road towards the crash scene when the striking vehicle was observed westbound on Golf Road with heavy damage.

Officers attempted to stop this vehicle but the operator refused to stop. The vehicle pursuit continued west on Golf Road at which time the driver stopped the vehicle, on the roadway, in close proximity of his residence.

Shortly after coming to a stop, the driver of the vehicle disobeyed officer's commands and attempted to drive away in his heavily damaged vehicle. One officer was able to deploy an electronic control device in an effort to gain compliance. The vehicle rolled forward, a short distance, and came to a stop on the north boulevard in the 3600 block of Golf Road.

EMS was requested, due to the injuries the driver suffered at the initial the hit and run crash on Highway 53, and the driver was transported to a local hospital. Injuries appear to be non-life threatening at this time.

The driver of the striking vehicle was confirmed to be Keith Napolitano and he was the only person in the vehicle.

At about 4:10 PM, officers on the scene of the damaged suspect vehicle (3600 block of Golf Road) received information that a female, who resides with Napolitano, had entered their residence and turned on the burners of a gas stove.

The ECPD coordinated an evacuation of neighboring houses and a perimeter was set up to secure the area. The Eau Claire Police attempted to make phone contact with the female inside the residence. A short time later, the female exited her residence and she was transported to a local hospital for a medical and a mental health evaluation. No arrest was made with the female at this time but the investigation is ongoing.

The gas to the residence was shut off and officers cleared the residence for safety purposes.

Napolitano was arrested for the following offenses:

Disorderly Conduct

Hit and Run-Attended Motor Vehicle

Operating a Motor Vehicle while intoxicated

Recklessly Endangering Safety

Fleeing an Officer

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Eau Claire (WQOW) - A peaceful Friday afternoon quickly turned chaotic on Golf Road. Police say it all began when a man threatened another man at a business on Brackett Avenue. Police figured out who the man was, and what he was driving. That was then allegedly involved in a hit and run on Highway 53 and 93.

"Shortly after we were advised of that, we were told that a red corvette was the striking vehicle. This of course matched the suspect vehicle for the threats case," says Eau Claire Police Sgt. Travis Quella.  

Police say even with head injuries, the suspect continued driving, headed to his home on Golf Road.

"Several officers were in the Golf Road area and were proceeding to the crash, at which time the red Corvette, with heavy damage and a clearly injured male driver passed officers," says Sgt. Quella.

Police say he stopped near his home, but tried to take off again. That's when an officer used a taser on him through the window.

"Even though this was deployed, he continued driving on the roadway about another 50 yards with police officers in pursuit on foot. The car came to the final resting stop on the boulevard," Sgt. Quella says.

He was cuffed and checked out by medics. But right around that time, another call came in.

"We've got something going on, we need to evacuate the area," one officer told our reporter as she was on scene.

Police say a woman in the suspect's house had turned on a stove burner and the gas. Neighboring homes were evacuated, but police aren't sure why the woman did what she did.

"We may never know for sure, but there's every reason to believe that the timing was not coincidental, and that she was upset by what she was seeing directly in front of the residence, and did indeed do what she did shortly after that," says Sgt. Quella.

Police tried several times to negotiate with her on the phone. She eventually came out. 

"Criminal intent, it does not appear, was involved at this time, however additional investigation could lead to potential charges whether that be a negligent handling of burning materials or something along those lines," says Sgt. Quella.

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UPDATE:  Traffic is now flowing again on Golf Road following an incident in which two people were taken into custody.

Police say they were initially called on Friday afternoon because someone allegedly threatened a person at a business on Brackett Avenue.  That suspect was then involved in a crash at Highway 53 & Highway 93 around 4 p.m.  As officers came upon the scene, they say the suspect took off.  Eventually, police were able to take the man into custody on Golf Road.  At about that time, they learned there was a woman inside a home nearby who was allegedly making threats.  She was later taken into custody.

As soon as more information becomes available, we'll pass it along.

 

UPDATE: 5:12 p.m. - BREAKING: Officers just cuffed a woman who came out of the house.

Eau Claire (WQOW) - Golf Road has been shut down after an incident.

Our reporter on scene says a man was arrested after a car crashed into a tree on Golf Road. That happened around 4 p.m.

Golf Road has been blocked off from the area where the crash and arrest was made, East of Red Robin and Marshfield Clinic on Golf.  

Our reporter says she has seen neighbors in the area being evacuated. Law enforcement has also been focusing on a house across the street from where the crash happened.  

Sheriff Cramer says there is someone in the house and they shut off the gas to the home, but no more details have been released about why investigators are concerned. 

To recap: Our reporter on the scene says there was a crash on Golf Road and a man was arrested. The man who was taken into custody was put in an ambulance and that ambulance has since left the scene. Golf Road has been blocked off so please avoid that area for now if you can.  

As soon as we have more information to pass along we will let you know on air and online.

Timeline of events:

Follow @MeganWiebold on Twitter for live tweets from the scene

5:16 p.m. - Pic of arrest pic.twitter.com/H3BWVdRDiq

5:12 p.m. - BREAKING: Officers just cuffed a woman who came out of the house.

4:33 p.m. - Eau Claire County sheriff Ron Cramer just arrived on scene.

4:31 p.m. - Officer just grabbed rifle from squad car.

4:28 p.m. - Man being put on stretcher pic.twitter.com/0eSgdOzivp

4:28 p.m. - Pic from scene. Medics still evaluating guy cuffed on ground pic.twitter.com/0iSbx50HM1

4:23 p.m. - Police now evacuating everyone around the scene, say there's something "not safe" at the house where the car is smashed into the tree.

4:18 p.m. - BREAKING: person cuffed, on the ground, car smashed into tree on Golf Road

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