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A 49-year-old man driving a stolen vehicle allegedly crashed into three vehicles as he tried to escape pursuing officers Wednesday morning on U.S. 24 in Ute Pass.

Christopher James Allen was spotted "speeding, weaving and cutting across multiple lanes of traffic" at 9:51 a.m., the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said. Deputies were "conducting routine traffic enforcement" with the Colorado State Patrol.

Authorities tried to pull Allen over, but he reportedly didn't stop and sped west, hitting a utility trailer being towed by a pickup, the Sheriff's Office said.

A few minutes later, he crashed into a highway divider and lost control, coming to a stop in the westbound lanes of U.S. 24, the Sheriff's Office said. Then he sped away again, continuing west. Deputies again tried to get him to stop, but he side-swiped an unmarked Sheriff's Office vehicle, then turned around and headed east on U.S. 24.

Officers chased him to 21st Street, where he reportedly crashed into another vehicle that wasn't involved in the pursuit, the Sheriff's Office said. Allen got out of his vehicle and fled along Fountain Creek. Colorado Springs police contained the area, using a police dog and a drone to find him.

After about 45 minutes of searching, Allen was arrested on suspicion of aggravated motor vehicle theft, felony eluding, driving under the influence of drugs, multiple counts of reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of multiple accidents, reckless driving and failure to wear a seat belt, as well as several outstanding felony warrants, the Sheriff's Office said.

The vehicle Allen was driving was later found to have been stolen, police said.

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The other driver involved in the crash at U.S. 24 and 21st Street was taken to a hospital with injuries that were serious but not life-threatening, police said. The crash is being investigated as a vehicular assault.

The Sheriff's Office asked that the driver pulling a utility trailer carrying equipment on westbound U.S. 24 near Cave of the Winds to come forward. Deputies would like to inspect the trailer for damage or red paint transfer, which could be the result of being hit by Allen's vehicle.

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Ellie is a general assignment reporter. She's a proud Midwesterner, stationery hoarder and Earl Grey tea enthusiast. After interning at The Gazette in 2015, she joined the newspaper's staff in 2016.

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