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Two men are in custody after a traffic stop escalated into a high speed chase Monday.

At 4:21 p.m., a Delaware County sheriff’s deputy initiated a traffic stop for a license plate violation on a light blue Chrysler Sebring Convertible. The vehicle stopped at the southbound side of I-71 north of the U.S. 36/Ohio 37 exit. When a canine detected the presence of drugs in the vehicle, the driver led deputies on a pursuit.

The suspects’ vehicle drove south on I-71 and exited at U.S. 36. The vehicle turned west toward the City of Delaware. Pursuing deputies witnessed marijuana being thrown from the car, and a witness reported seeing a gun being thrown from the vehicle on the exit ramp — both the marijuana and the gun have been recovered.

The pursuit lasted approximately three minutes, ending in the area of U.S. 36 and Plunkett Road.

The driver, Brandon Hightower, 23, of Maple Heights, and the passenger, Anthony McClain, 25, of Columbus, have been arrested. Both men face multiple charges including felony fleeing, carrying a concealed weapon, tampering with evidence and drug charges.

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