THP: Virginia man who fled Monday I-81 crash found next day “soiled, scratched”

THP: Virginia man who fled Monday I-81 crash found next day "soiled, scratched" (Image 1)

Multiple police agencies in Northeast Tennessee looked for a Virginia man who crashed his vehicle Monday and fled, leaving behind a bag of marijuana, before he was finally caught Tuesday, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol.

Michael Widneer, of Washington County, Va., crashed his vehicle on Interstate 81 near mile marker 56, which is near Tri-Cities Crossing, Monday morning, THP said.

THP Trooper David Osborne investigated and found the marijuana, drug paraphernalia and ammunition inside the crashed vehicle. Widneer was not there.

Johnson City police sent a K9 officer to help find Widneer.

Soon after, workers at a nearby construction site saw a man acting suspicious and called Kingsport police.

A THP helicopter was called in to aid in the search for Widneer.

Sullivan County sheriff’s deputies also helped in the search, but it was called off around noon that day.

On Tuesday, a “very soiled and scratched white male who was acting very nervous and erratic” approached workers at another construction site on Lebanon Road in the Colonial Heights area of Sullivan County, according to THP.

The man, who was Widneer, tried to take a worker’s cell phone. As investigators were coming to the scene, they saw him, and he reportedly said, “I’m the guy you’re looking for.”

Widneer’s charges include possession of a felony amount of marijuana, initiation of methamphetamine and with being a fugitive from justice out of Virginia.

Widneer was being held in the Sullivan County Jail.

Virginia authorities plan to extradite him, according to THP. He was charged in Virginia with failure to appear on charges of manufacturing schedule I and II drugs.

Copyright 2014 WJHL. All rights reserved.

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