Driver arrested after Thruway police chase


QUEENSBURY, N.Y. (WRGB) - State Police say they arrested the woman who led them on an early morning chase on the Northway following a traffic stop on Friday.

The car was pulled over at Exit 23 on the Thruway in Albany County, was taken north, and dumped in Queensbury.

Ericka Handy, 27, of Vermont, was allegedly under the influence when she led police on a chase. Police found her Friday around noon after another woman picked her up. That woman, Nicole LaFrance, was also arrested for allegedly having a loaded handgun in the car.

Handy was a passenger in the car with David Santiago, 34, of Vermont, who was arrested just before 5 a.m. Friday when police pulled his car over in Bethlehem on the Thruway. As Santiago was questioned outside his car for cocaine possession, police say his passenger, Handy, slid over, took the wheel, and sped off. Police chased the car until it allegedly crossed lanes, and the chase was terminated for safety purposes.

"It was a normal day, then we found an abandoned car parked outside," said Mike Nunziato, a manager at Green Mountain Electric Supply in Queensbury.

He says about an hour later, his employees showed up to work to find something that didn't belong.

"One of my warehouse guys said there's a parked car or back, looks kind of beat up, like it was in an accident," Nunziato said.

The car, with Vermont plates, had been spotted near Queensbury's Exit 18 around 5:30 a.m. Surveillance cameras showed it being dropped off behind Green Mountain Electric.

"Dents all over the car, it was banged up pretty bad, grass hanging out from underneath the front of the car, cell phone still plugged in in the car charging, like someone just parked it and split pretty quick," Nunziato said.

Police took the car from its Queensbury location around 7:30 a.m. Friday.

Police say Handy and LaFrance, also of Vermont, were arraigned and are being held in Warren County Jail.

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