Fla. man and missing teen killed themselves following police chase
(KRQE.COM) SHIPROCK, N.M. – Deputies say the two people who led them on a chase from Colorado to New Mexico, were a Florida man and his 14-year-old niece.
Deputies say there is a possibility 31-year-old Benjamin James Edwards III was having a sexual relationship with the girl.
Monday, the two drove off without paying for gas at a Cortez gas station. They then led deputies on a two-hour chase, firing shots along the way.
The pair crashed their SUV near Shiprock.
After several hours, the chase ended near Shiprock when the pair crashed their vehicle on a dead-end road.
When deputies approached the vehicle they found the young girl and Edwards dead from self-inflicted gunshot wounds to their mouths.
“So far we have only found one gun,” Lt. Kyle Lincoln of the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office said. “We’re still in the process of processing the vehicle but at this point only one gun has been located.”
Investigators said Edwards was a person-of-interest in the theft of a firearm and the disappearance of his 14-year-old niece.
Officials said no officers fired at the vehicle during the pursuit.
They’re still trying to determine if the 14-year-old went willingly or was kidnapped.