Victim identified, arrest made in deadly Pearl police chase that ended in Flowood

Published: Aug. 14, 2022 at 9:53 PM CDT
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FLOWOOD, Miss. (WLBT) - Officials have announced the name of the victim killed in a Pearl police pursuit that ended in Flowood on Sunday night.

Rankin County Coroner David Ruth identified the victim as 47-year-old Steven Pearson. According to Pearl police, Pearson died when his motorcycle was hit at an intersection during the chase.

Pearl police arrested Ryan Irwin, 29 of Brandon. He’s charged with felony fleeing resulting in death.

Irwin is being held without bond in the Rankin County Detention Center.

It all started when Pearl police say they attempted to make a traffic stop on Irwin’s 2009 Silver Infiniti near the intersection of Bierdeman Road and U.S. Hwy 80 around 6:30 p.m. Sunday.

Irwin took off at a high rate of speed westbound on Hwy. 80 and turned north on Hwy. 468/Flowood Drive, Pearl officials say.

Irwin continued eastbound on Flowood Drive, crossing over Airport Road, then pulling the Infiniti into the parking lot behind the Academy Sports store on Flowood Drive.

The Pearl officer pulled in where the vehicle had stopped, exited his patrol car, and held Irwin at gunpoint ordering him to exit the vehicle.

Irwin did not comply, backed his vehicle up, and sped back out onto Flowood Dive, police say.

Then, according to Pearl police, Flowood officers continued the pursuit a short distance when Irwin struck Steven Pearson’s motorcycle at the intersection of Old Fannin Road and Flowood Drive.

Steven Pearson was transported to Merit Health Hospital where he died.

After he was taken into custody, officers said they found Irwin was driving with a suspended license, no insurance, and has felony convictions at the federal and state levels.

The Mississippi Highway Patrol is leading this investigation.

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