Man gets 15 years in tri-city police chase

Several police and Sheriff's Office vehicles chase Matthew Oakes' vehicle near the intersection of Alabama 119 and U.S. 31 in Alabaster on the night of Nov. 25, 2014. (File)

Several police and Sheriff’s Office vehicles chase Matthew Oakes’ vehicle near the intersection of Alabama 119 and U.S. 31 in Alabaster on the night of Nov. 25, 2014. (File)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

COLUMBIANA – A 27-year-old Wilsonville man will spend the next 15 years in prison after he pleaded guilty in late April to leading police on a three-city chase in November 2014.



Matthew Roland Oakes, who lists an address on Shelby County 5 in Wilsonville, pleaded guilty to one felony count of first-degree criminal mischief, two misdemeanor counts of second-degree criminal mischief, one misdemeanor count of reckless endangerment and one misdemeanor count of attempting to elude law enforcement during an April 29 hearing in front of Circuit Court Judge Dan Reeves.

Through a plea agreement, charges of second-degree possession of marijuana, giving a false name to law enforcement, reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of an accident, third-degree criminal mischief, unlawful starting of a vehicle, failure to stop at a stop sign, failure to yield right of way, speeding, running a red light and driving with a suspended license were dismissed against Oakes.

Because Oakes had two previous adult felony convictions on his record, he was sentenced to a total of 15 years in prison under the Alabama Habitual Offender Act, according to court documents.

He received jail credit of 123 days for time served in the Shelby County Jail since his December 2014 arrest.

At about 5:45 p.m. on Nov. 25, 2014, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office deputies and Alabaster police officers attempted to initiate a traffic stop of Oakes’ vehicle in Alabaster when the suspect fled the scene in his Jeep.

After the suspect fled the scene of the traffic stop, Alabaster, Pelham and Helena police officers joined the chase, which eventually led into the Dearing Downs neighborhood in Helena.

After the suspect abandoned his vehicle near the area of Secretariat Circle and Seattle Slew Drive in the Dearing Downs neighborhood, he fled the scene on foot, launching a search of the area, according to police.

At about 10 p.m. on Nov. 26, 2014, law enforcement called off the search, but were able to identify the suspect and issue a warrant for his arrest. Oakes was taken into custody on Dec. 28, 2014.