UPDATE: Police identify man who died after chase in Weston
WESTON (WAOW) -
ROTHSCHILD (WAOW) -- Rothschild police say they don't know why the 77-year old Fred Abel got into his car and drove away, even though his wife tried to stop him.
So where was he going? Family members say, they don't know. But they do say he had health problems. However, police say they don't know if his medical issues was a factor in the crash.
"All we know is he had the onset of Alzheimer's," Rothschild Chief Dean Albrecht said.
According to Rothschild police, an officer was called to Abel's home just after two o'clock Monday morning for a medical situation. But, when police arrived, Abel was gone.
"We reviewed both the in car dash video from our squad car, our officers and the top speed that we observed on there was 60 plus miles an hour, somewhere in that range," Chief Albrecht said.
Minutes later, police found him driving his car on Weston Avenue and started chasing him.
Police say Abel drove erratically, not stopping at stop signs and driving into the oncoming traffic lane. Police tried to stop him, but they say Abel kept going.
"Speeds were roughly 15 miles over the speed limit. Not excessive, but you know, this morning it was very slippery out. We got some precipitation last evening. The roads were icy. So, it was too fast for the conditions at the time," Albrecht said.
Police continued the chase for ten miles. It ended on County Highway Z in Wausau when Abel lost control of his car and crashed into a tree. Officers say he died on scene.
Police say the entire episode is a mystery to them, and to Abel's family.
"We don't know where he was going. His family says they don't know why he was in that area, he doesn't know anyone in that area," Albrecht said.
The Marathon County Medical Examiner released the preliminary cause of death as head trauma sustained in the crash.
The Marathon County District Attorney will review the case. Rothschild Police say, as of now, the officer had reason to pursue Able and will not be punished for any wrong doing.
Police say Fred Abel, 77, died after crashing his car during an early morning police chase.
According to a press release from the Rothschild Police Department, one of Abel's family members called 911 just after 2:15 a.m. Monday morning and reported that Abel left his home after making comments about dying and kicking his wife. The family member also told the dispatcher that Abel had Alzheimer's.
Officers tracked Abel to Weston Avenue near Volkman street in Weston. Abel did not stop when police tried to pull him over, according to police. According to the press release he sped up and ran stop signs through Weston, north on Camp Phillips Road and then east from County Highway X onto County Highway Z.
Just after 2:30 a.m., Abel hit a tree.
Rothschild Police will hold a press conference at 2:00 p.m. Monday. Newsline 9 will have a crew and will have updates on Newsline 9 at 5 and 6, as well as WAOW.com.
A 77-year-old man is dead after police say he crashed his vehicle during an early morning police chase.
According to the Rothschild Police Department, around 2:30 am, police attempted to stop the man for a previous medical incident. He fled and led police on a chase that lasted 10 miles.
Police say while the officer was attempting to stop the vehicle, it crashed on County Highway Z in the area of N. 65th Street in Wausau.
The driver was pronounced dead at the scene. His name has not yet been released.
Police say the accident is currently being investigated by the Marathon County Crash Reconstruction Team.