CHERRY CREEK – A Collins man who led a state trooper on a nine-mile chase through this Chautauqua County town Saturday night said after his arrest that he had been seeking medical attention in the wake of injecting himself with heroin. Donald J. Pfaffenbach, 31, of Quaker Road, was at the wheel of a Chevrolet Blazer that Trooper Keith Mulawka saw about 8:15 p.m., parked outside a state Department of Transportation salt barn on County Road 68 in Cherry Creek.
As the trooper approached the parking area, the sport utility vehicle started up abruptly. Mulawka, of the Jamestown State Police barracks, tried to pull it over but ended up chasing the Blazer for 12 minutes at speeds that peaked at 90 mph.
The SUV stopped on Center Road in Cherry Creek and the driver ran into a patch of brush, where Mulawka caught him. Pfaffenbach reportedly said he had injected himself with heroin at the salt barn and needed medical attention. He was treated in Brooks Memorial Hospital, Dunkirk, before being sent to the Chautauqua County Jail in lieu of $10,000 bail.
Pfaffenbach was charged with felony counts of driving while his ability was impaired by drugs and first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, as well as speeding, reckless driving, third-degree fleeing a police officer, resisting arrest and assorted vehicle and traffic violations.