‘We are gonna die’: Man suspected of abducting child held on $1M bond, video released

Child "doing well" following release from hospital

Video of child kidnapping, chase released

JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - A Jonesboro man suspected of abducting a child in late June then led police on a chase that ended in a crash in another county is now behind bars.

On July 10, Jonesboro police released video of the chase.

WARNING: THE VIDEO CONTAINS STRONG LANGUAGE. VIEWER DISCRETION ADVISED. A MILLION DOLLAR bond was set for Bennie Hancock, of Jonesboro, for his role in the kidnapping of a 6-month-old child. On June 30th, the mother of the child advised JPD officers that her boyfriend, the non-biological parent of the child, had taken her son around 4:15 pm. from their residence on North Rogers and was traveling in her brown GMC Yukon. As officers arrived at the residence, they observed the Yukon leaving the apartment complex. The Officer activated the lights and sirens with the intent to stop the vehicle from traveling east on Johnson Ave. Bennie Hancock recklessly fled from officers, who did not pursue the vehicle at that time. A child restraint was not present in the vehicle causing Hancock to hold the child in his lap during the pursuit. Multiple calls transpired between the suspect and the child's mother, who was at JPD, with the suspect threatening to kill himself, the 6-month-old child, and anyone else while he was fleeing. Hancock refused to turn the child over to authorities and fled Jonesboro and Craighead County. Deputies with the Poinsett County Sherriff's Office located Hancock traveling south on Hwy 1 in Poinsett County, again, Hancock refused to stop. Around Harrisburg, his vehicle struck a PCSO deputy's patrol unit. Once they entered Cross County, Hancock traveled through a highway work zone north of Cherry Valley. A construction worker ran off the road to avoid an impact with Hancock's vehicle, which was traveling at high rates of speed. A Poinsett County Deputy witnessed Hancock hanging the child out of the window as the pursuit continued. The vehicle stalled multiple times, each time Hancock refused to exit the Yukon or surrender the child. It was unknown to authorities if Hancock had a weapon during the time of the pursuit. Bennie Hancock continued to flee at high speeds on the gravel roads. A pickup, driven by a civilian, struck the Tahoe on the back passenger side. No injuries occurred during this accident. The suspect continued to flee at high rates of speed as he traveled northbound on Hwy 1 from Vanndale. At one point, the suspect tried to run southbound traffic off the road. The Yukon was eventually stopped by ASP who performed a “pit’ maneuver on the vehicle, which then crashed. The child was flown to Le Bonheur Hospital in Memphis for observation and has since been released and is reported in good condition. The next court appearance for Hancock will be August 28, at the Craighead County Court House.

Posted by Jonesboro Police Department on Friday, July 10, 2020

Bennie Irving Hancock, 37, of Jonesboro is being held on a $1 million bond after his first appearance in district court on Friday on a charge of kidnapping.

The mother told police Hancock, her boyfriend and non-biological parent of the child, abducting a child from her home on North Rogers Tuesday, June 30, according to the initial incident report.

Police revealed on July 10 that a child restraint wasn’t in the vehicle, causing Hancock to hold the child in his lap during the chase.

We also learned that during multiple calls between Hancock and the child’s mother, who was at the police department, the suspect threatened to kill himself, the 6-month-old child, and anyone else he was fleeing.

Arrest made in kidnapping, suspect and child taken to hospitals

After taking the child, police said Hancock fled the scene in a GMC Yukon headed south on Highway 1.

Several law enforcement agencies assisted JPD in the search for the vehicle.

Deputies with the Poinsett County Sheriff’s Office found Hancock heading south on Highway 1 in Poinsett County and Hancock refused to stop again.

When he got to Harrisburg, police said Hancock’s vehicle struck a deputy’s patrol unit.

The Yukon was spotted in Cross County and a chase ensued.

Bennie Hancock, 37 years old of Jonesboro, was arrested yesterday afternoon after a three-county pursuit that led to...

Posted by Jonesboro Police Department on Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Hancock went through a highway work zone north of Cherry Valley.

“A construction worker ran off the road to avoid an impact with Hancock’s vehicle, which was traveling at high rates of speed,” police released on Facebook.

During the pursuit, according to the incident report, police spoke with Hancock on the phone and urged him to pull over and speak with an officer.

“[Hancock] advised that he was not going to stop and that he was not going back to jail,” Officer Tyler D. Williams stated in the report.

Williams said he pleaded with Hancock to stop and speak to officers because they knew he had a child in the vehicle.

“[Hancock] advised multiple times that he was going to die today, and then he began saying ‘We are gonna die’ in reference to the child,” the report stated. “{Hancock] referenced himself and [the child] dying today multiple times before he hung up the phone on me.”

A Poinsett County Deputy witnessed Hancock hanging the child out of the window as the chase continued.

Hancock’s vehicle stalled multiple times, each time he refused to get out or ‘surrender the child'.

At this point, officers and deputies didn’t know if he had a weapon.

Hancock then drove on gravel roads and a pickup, driven by a civilian, struck the vehicle on the back passenger side.

He then traveled northbound on Highway 1 from Vanndale.

“At one point, the suspect tried to run southbound traffic off the road,” JPD said.

Arkansas State Police eventually stopped the SUV who performed a “pit’ maneuver on the vehicle, which then crashed.

Both he and the victim suffered injuries.

Hancock was taken to CrossRidge Community Hospital in Wynne where he was treated and released back into police custody.

The child was airlifted to Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis. Smith said Wednesday that the child had been released and was “doing well.”

Hancock will appear in court again on Aug. 28.

Hancock was also arrested on suspicion of criminal attempt, criminal mischief-1st degree, endangering the welfare of a minor-1st degree, fleeing, theft of a vehicle valued at $5,000 or less but greater than $1,000, aggravated assault on a family or household member, aggravated assault, terroristic threatening-1st degree, leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, driving while license cancelled, suspended or revoked, reckless driving and no child restraint.

Region 8 News will continue to follow this story and provide new details as they become available.

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