Man accused of leading authorities on high-speed chase back in Douglas County custody |

Man accused of leading authorities on high-speed chase back in Douglas County custody

Kurt Hildebrand |
A 1997 Airstream motorhome that was the subject of a spark-filled chase from Stateline, South Lake Tahoe through Carson and ending in Gardnerville in August 2018.
Kurt Hildebrand

STATELINE, Nev. — The driver of a motorhome involved in a fiery pursuit last summer is in Douglas County custody on a warrant issued after he failed to appear in district court.

Christopher L. Debastiani, 47, was returned to Douglas County on Saturday, Feb. 23. He is being held in lieu of $10,000.

Debastiani, of Alturas, California, was scheduled to appear in Douglas County District Court on Jan. 15 after he waived his preliminary hearing in Tahoe Township Justice Court on Dec. 18.

Debastiani is denying he did anything wrong when he drove his motorhome across the state line on Aug. 26.

He said he was startled by South Lake Tahoe police officers who knocked on the door of his motorhome.

Douglas County deputies received a report that the 1996 Airstream motorhome was heading toward Stateline on U.S. 50.

The deputy who started the pursuit said he saw the motorhome drive through the casino corridor without lights at about 55 mph in a 35 mph zone.

Deputies followed the motorhome with lights and sirens on U.S. 50 along Lake Tahoe and over Spooner Summit.

They tried to stop him using spike strips at the junction of U.S. 395 and 50.

Debastiani continued south on U.S. 395 with two flattened tires, sending a shower of sparks behind him and leaving a groove in the highway.

Residents videoed the motorhome’s passage through Minden and Gardnerville before it finally came to rest against the Ritchford Stables in Gardnerville.

He is facing a charge of felony eluding in district court.

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