York City man stopped by street sign in foot chase sentenced

  • A York City man involved in two separate police chases was sentenced to prison Friday.
  • Napolean Snellings, 41, was sentenced to a year minus a day to two years minus two days in York County Prison.

A York City man who ran from police earlier this year, causing three Taser deployments and an on-foot collision with a street sign, was sentenced to prison time Friday.

Napolean Sherard Snellings, 41, of 727 E. Philadelphia St., pleaded guilty to flight to avoid apprehension, and as part of his negotiated guilty plea, Snellings' previous charges of attempted robbery of a motor vehicle, attempted theft, and resisting arrest, were all dismissed.

Napolean Snellings

Snellings also pleaded guilty to fleeing or attempting to elude officer, drug possession, and driving with a suspended license, which came from a separate police chase in November 2015, online court records state. 

Kyle King, York County District Attorney's Office spokesman, said Snellings was sentenced to a year minus one day, to two years minus two days in York County Prison.

Reached Friday afternoon, Snellings' attorney, Bill Graff, declined comment.

January 2017 charges:  A state trooper was trying to arrest Snellings on a warrant when he fled, police said.

About 2:30 p.m. Jan. 19, a state police trooper was sitting in the parking lot of Mister Car Wash, 2720 E. Market St., in Springettsbury Township.

While sitting there, the trooper noticed Snellings exiting the front passenger seat of a blue Volvo SUV in the parking lot, documents state. The trooper recognized Snellings from previous dealings with him, and the trooper knew there was an active warrant out for Snellings' arrest out of state police's York barracks, according to court documents.

PSP: Street sign stops man running from trooper

Police say the trooper attempted to take Snellings into custody, but Snellings fled on foot. The chase led through the parking lot and into a rock drainage area, making the trooper fall and causing minor injury, police said.

When the trooper picked himself up from the fall, he yelled at Snellings to stop, police said.

"As I was pursuing Snellings, I heard him making statements of 'I have a gun,'" the trooper wrote in charging documents.

From there, the trooper chased Snellings into another parking lot, where police say Snellings continued to ignore commands. Snellings ran around a vehicle in the parking lot and continued telling the trooper that he had a gun, police said.

The trooper attempted to stun Snellings with a Taser but was unsuccessful, according to charging documents.

Snellings tried to stop a vehicle, causing the trooper to again try to tase him, police said. That attempt was unsuccessful as well.

Police say Snellings continued to flee to the intersections of Eastern Boulevard and Northern Way, where there was a black Jeep Wrangler stopped at a light.

Snellings allegedly attempted to get into the vehicle by pulling on the driver-side door handle, according to police. The trooper saw a "distressed look" on the driver's face, and the trooper told him to lock the doors and not allow Snellings in, documents state.

The driver began to drive away in an attempt to stop Snellings from getting into the car, according to police. Snellings let go and then continued fleeing on foot until he collided with a street sign in the median of the roadway, causing him to fall to the ground, police allege.

In an interview with the driver after Snellings' arrest, the driver told troopers that he thought he was going to get carjacked, police said.

When the trooper tried to arrest Snellings, he continued to resist by locking his arms out to the side of his body, documents state. Another responding trooper deployed her Taser on Snellings, which allowed them to take Snellings into custody, police said.

November 2015 charges: In December 2015, state police filed charges against Snellings, in which officials say he fled from police after he was seen driving his car with an expired registration.

Police saw Snellings driving his 2000 Red Nissan Maxima on Route 30 west bound near Cool Sprigns Road, in Hellam Township at about 12:30 a.m. Nov. 28, 2015.

When the trooper saw the vehicle's registration was expired, he went behind the car and turned on his emergency lights to pull him over.

Police said Snellings pulled over, and when the trooper walked up to the car, Snelligns took off. Snellings drove onto the Wrighstville Exit and continued north on Cool Springs Road, and then into a field to the right side of the road

The car continued into the field until it became stuck in a mud puddle, police said. Everyone inside the car fled on foot, and the trooper then chased Snellings, court documents state.

Snellings ran down the side of a fence, and laid down on the other side of it to hide from the trooper, police said. 

Snellings was found by police about 100 yards from his vehicle, charging documents state. 

Police searched his car and found suspected marijuana and cocaine inside, documents state.

Snellings will receive credit for the 183 days he spent in York County Prison before his guilty plea.

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.