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Convicted felon leads officers on bi-county chase after check fraud, police say

Man, 56, is accused of hurting police officer during getaway

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MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Theodore Griffin, the driver who led police officers on a bi-county chase on Friday in South Florida,  has a long criminal history that includes 35 felonies, according to the Hollywood Police Department. 

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A check cashing store reported Griffin was forcing a man to cash a stolen check for $991.39. Officers responded about 3 p.m., said Miranda Grossman, a spokeswoman for the Hollywood Police Department. 

The officers followed the 56-year-old convicted felon to a parked blue Honda with a passenger. Grossman said the officers asked him to step out of the car, but he refused and in his rush to getaway struck one officer with the car. 

The chase began when Griffin sped away on Hollywood Boulevard, west of 28th Avenue. Grossman said it wasn't the first time Griffin had been accused of hurting a police officer or fleeing and eluding a police officer. 

For about 10 minutes, officers followed Griffin to Opa-locka, Miami Gardens and other areas of northwest Miami-Dade. Griffin sped on the Florida Turnpike and weaved in and out of traffic, and he failed to stop on red lights.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers assisted the officers from Miami-Dade, Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood departments. At Northwest 69th Avenue and 15th Street, Miami-Dade police officers were able to surround the car. 

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The passenger didn't appear to put up much of a fight, but witness Zhaneri Richardson said Griffin struggled. 

"They took him out the car and they put him on the ground,"  Richardson said. "His hat fell off."

Police officers questioned the passenger and later released him from custody. Grossman said the officer who Griffin was accused of hitting didn't require medical attention.

 


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