A Hernando County (Fla.) Sheriff's deputy died early Sunday in a crash during a high-speed pursuit through four counties.

Dep. John Mecklenburg, 35, was killing in the pursuit that began at 4:40 a.m. when a driver was spotted heading the wrong way on U.S. 41 in Brooksville. Officers tried to stop Michael James Anthony, 35.

Officers successfully performed the "precision immobilization technique" on Anthony, who then continued the pursuit. The Brooksville PD and Florida Highway Patrol were also involved in the pursuit.

Dep. Mecklenburg was killed near U.S. 41 and Painter Place after losing control of his cruiser, veering onto the shoulder, and hitting a tree.

"Dep. Mecklenburg was attempting to apprehend a suspect who was actively placing innocent lives at risk," Hernando Sheriff Al Nienhuis said in a statement. "Please keep the Mecklenburg family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time."

Source: The Tampa Tribune

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