Driver of car hit during police chase still recovering one week later

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CLEVELAND - The video shows it all from above: a suspect hits another vehicle and a utility pole before rolling over during a high-speed police chase that ended at  East 105 and Superior in Cleveland.

According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, it happened at 7:46 p.m. on June 6. The driver, Robert Poole, 44, faces several charges in the case.

An Ohio State Highway Patrol helicopter began to track the suspect, and troopers discontinued following him in their cruisers.

Poole continued to drive at a high rate of speed until he crashed. Poole, of Cleveland, was found to be in possession of a large amount of cocaine.

Desirae Powell, 29, also of Cleveland, was driving the vehicle Poole hit.

The 29-year-old mother of three had just left a store and was driving on Superior Ave when Poole came flying toward her and smashed into her white Hyundai Sonata.

“I just couldn’t believe it,” said Powell. “I was just in shock, I couldn’t stop shaking.”

The hit was so hard, Powell says, her flip-flop flew out of the vehicle.

Moments after impact, she is seen on the video staggering out of the car and toward the sidewalk.

A good Samaritan stops to help her, and then State Troopers rush over to administer aid.

Desirae was in extreme pain and suffered a concussion, cuts, scrapes and severe internal and external bruising.

“My stomach, my chest was burning, my face was numb,” said Desirae.

She remembers also seeing fire falling from the power lines above, and troopers moving her away to a grassy area.

A week later she is still in extreme pain and can’t work, not only because of her injuries but she’s a Lyft driver and her car is totalled.

Wednesday night, speaking with Fox 8’s Suzanne Stratford she said she understands troopers were chasing a drug suspect, but she questions such an aggressive and long chase through a residential area.

“Why does the State Highway Patrol have the right to do that, like my life could’ve been gone, my kids without a mother,” said Desirae who hopes they will reconsider their pursuit policy. “What does it take someone losing their life?”

We reached out to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, but were unable to get comment on their pursuit policy.

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