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Deputies: Man wanted for human trafficking arrested after crash in Florida Panhandle

Deputies said the man drove off when they tried to talk to him about a burglary in the Dogwood Heights area.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. — A man accused in a burglary and wanted in connection to human trafficking and smuggling has been arrested in the Florida Panhandle.

WCTV, the CBS affiliate station covering the area, said deputies were trying to talk to the man about a burglary in the Dogwood Heights area. That's when the man drove off. The man was later identified as Domingo Morales Hamilton Fernando.

The outlet said deputies chased the man for a couple of miles outside of Marianna. The man ran through multiple stop signs and sped on Highway 90 towards the Chipola River Bridge, according to the sheriff's office.

When deputies tried to do a traffic stop, they said Fernando lost control of his car and crashed near an intersection.

Fernando was arrested when he crawled out of the car. Deputies said a 17-year-old girl also crawled out of the car and a 2-year-old child was standing in the back seat. A 3-year-old child was also thrown from the car into the nearby grass.

According to the sheriff's office, the three children appeared to be unharmed, but they were taken to a local hospital to get checked out.

WCTV said Fernando was taken to a hospital and is in critical condition.

Deputies said they identified him through the Department of Homeland Security, where he is wanted for allegedly being in the country illegally and in connection to human trafficking and smuggling.

Sheriff Lou Roberts said deputies were not aware there were children in the car at the time of the chase.

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