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Police continue to search for Pana man now convicted after jury trial

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SHELBYVILLE — A Pana man who fled from police at speeds of more than 80 mph was found guilty by a Shelby County jury of aggravated fleeing from a peace officer.

But 36-year-old Brian M. Mahnke wasn’t around to hear the verdict, as he had previously skipped bail and is being sought by law enforcement. He's not been seen since he failed to show for a final pretrial hearing April 7.  

A news release from Shelby County State’s Attorney Nichole Kroncke said the case was decided Monday and it took the jury 10 minutes to come back with their guilty verdict.

Kroncke said the charge dates to August 2, 2019, when a Shelby County Sheriff’s Department deputy tried to pull him over for a traffic stop. Mahnke, whose license was suspended, sped away. Kroncke said he blew through four stop signs in Shelbyville before fleeing towards Pana and police lost him north of Oconee.

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“A female passenger attempted to exit the vehicle several times during the 35-minute pursuit, without success,” Kroncke added. “Once the vehicle ran out of gas, the passenger called the police to report that Mahnke had fled on foot. Mahnke was arrested more than two months later on an arrest warrant issued on this case.”

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He had been released on bail totaling more than $15,000 for the fleeing and eluding charge and domestic battery offenses.

A sentencing hearing is now scheduled for June 23 and Kroncke said Mahnke faces up to six years in prison.


Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid

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