PLYMOUTH — Official charges in Marshall County have been filed against a Fort Wayne man who led officers in a multi-county vehicle chase that ended with the death of a Whitley County K9.
Clarence Shearer, 31, Fort Wayne, is being charged with attempted armed robbery and armed robbery, both level 3 felonies; attempted auto theft, auto theft, and theft, all level 6 felonies; and unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon, a level 4 felony.
Shearer allegedly stole a vehicle in Plymouth with a passenger after the vehicle they had been using got a flat tire on US 30.
Shearer then led police on a chase through Warsaw and east to an area along US 30 near Columbia City.
The series of events began Wednesday, July 10, when Plymouth police went to LifePlex, 2855 Miller Drive, regarding an armed robbery report. A man, later identified as Shearer, displayed a handgun and stole a man’s black 2016 Chrysler 200. Shearer then left the scene, traveling north on Pioneer Drive toward US 30.
Police were then informed of a second attempted armed robbery in the same parking lot. Officers interviewed a second man, who said he was sitting in the parking lot of LifePlex when Shearer opened the driver’s side door of his vehicle, pointed a handgun at him and demanded his vehicle. Shearer said “I ain’t gonna shoot you” several times and demanded the vehicle. The man told Shearer to go ahead and shoot him. Shearer then left and approached the driver of the 2016 Chrysler.
The driver of the Chrysler 200 said he was leaving LifePlex when Shearer walked over to him and asked him for a lighter. The man unlocked his vehicle to get a lighter and Shearer displayed a gun, pointed it at him and demanded the keys to the vehicle.
Officers also found a red Cadillac with a blown tire on US 30. It was later determined that the vehicle was stolen at gunpoint in Chicago. The handgun used in Plymouth was found inside the stolen vehicle after the chase came to an end.
Indiana State Police then interviewed the passenger.
The passenger said Shearer had picked him up in Chicago in the red Cadillac. Court documents said the passenger didn’t ask where the vehicle came from, but that he found a wallet in the vehicle that belonged the victim of the Chicago armed robbery. The passenger admitted to police that he took the contents of the wallet and put them in his own pocket.
Shearer and the passenger had been traveling east on US 30, heading to Fort Wayne, when the Cadillac got a flat tire. Shearer then told him to wait in the car. A few minutes later, Shearer returned in the Chrysler 200 and told him to get in. The passenger said they hadn’t traveled far when a police car began pursuing them. The passenger then asked to be let out of the vehicle and Shearer told him to take the gun with him, which the passenger refused to.
The chase ended near Columbia City where police allege he swerved to avoid stop sticks and instead struck a police car. The police vehicle caught on fire and officers were unable to save a K9 officer, who was inside the vehicle.
Shearer was taken into custody in Whitley County and was transported to Parkview Hospital Fort Wayne for treatment. He has an active parole violation warrant from Allen County and, when released from the hospital, will be transported to the Allen County Jail.