150 MPH Pursuit of Felony Absconder

On April 5, 2020 Arkansas State Police Trooper Alan Aiken was stationed on the southbound 76 ramp to I-49 running radar, when a black passenger car went by at a radar locked sped of 125 mph. That section of highway had a speed limit of 70 mph. Aiken entered I-49 south and attempted to catch up to the vehicle, which eventually pulled over… but not for long.

Watch this intense pursuit involving multiple PITs and PIT attempts, 150 MPH speeds, and a foot chase with a shocking ending.

Upon taking him into custody, the suspect was identified as Michael Nightengale. When asked why he had been running, Nightengale initially refused to respond, later admitting to Aiken that he was wanted as an absconder. After a trip to Washington Regional Medical Center for to complaints of a concussion, Nightengale was delivered to the jail on requested charges of felony fleeing, fleeing on foot, reckless driving, speeding, DWI drugs, refusal to submit to a chemical test, and no liability insurance… and all of his other warrants.

A thorough search of Nightengale’s vehicle did not locate any contraband. Nightengale was ultimately charged with felony fleeing, DWI (1st), and refusal to submit to a chemical test. His trial is set for May 7, 2021. Nightengale has an extensive criminal history, mostly relating to drug offenses, and one of the most normal-looking mugshots in existence.

It should be noted that Trooper Aiken is best known as the guy who intentionally drove his police vehicle into a man by the name of John Overman, an undercover state police lieutenant who Aiken thought was the suspect in a pursuit. After striking Overman, Aiken jumped from his car, shouting at Overman to get on the ground while holding him at gunpoint— only then realizing they were on the same team.

In a subsequent complaint, Lt. Overman offered scathing commentary about Aiken and his suitability for work in law enforcement: “Trooper Aiken has had several pursuits since [the] incident and continues to demonstrate a very limited ability to control his emotions and actions in stressful situations. [. . .] Trooper Aiken has shown that he cannot be trusted to perform under stressful situations in a manner that does not jeopardize safety or that he does not bring embarrassment or liability to the department.”

Overman’s complaint further alleged that Aiken “sees the incident as something of a joke,” claiming that Trooper Aiken had attempted to get the state police repair shop to give him a piece of his damaged bumper. The damage, of course, was from hitting Lt. Overman — who alleged that Aiken intended to turn whatever he received into a commemorative plaque.

Arkansas watchdog journalist Russ Racop, author of the Bad Government in Arkansas blog, reported in late-September 2017 that “on Thursday, September 21, 2017 Arkansas State Police Troop L staff were instructed to pull Trooper Aiken from pursuits he tries to join and to terminate any pursuits he begins, except in extreme cases.” It is unclear when that instruction was rescinded.

Racop’s original report, and much more, can be found at http://rwp.yt/aiken.

0:00 Highlights
1:13 The chase is on
9:53 Both cars catch air
11:24 In custody

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35 thoughts on “150 MPH Pursuit of Felony Absconder

  1. It should be noted that Trooper Aiken is best known as the guy who intentionally drove his police vehicle into a man by the name of John Overman, an undercover state police lieutenant who Aiken thought was the suspect in a pursuit. After striking Overman, Aiken jumped from his car, shouting at Overman to get on the ground while holding him at gunpoint— only then realizing they were on the same team.

    In a subsequent complaint, Lt. Overman offered scathing commentary about Aiken and his suitability for work in law enforcement: "Trooper Aiken has had several pursuits since [the] incident and continues to demonstrate a very limited ability to control his emotions and actions in stressful situations. […] Trooper Aiken has shown that he cannot be trusted to perform under stressful situations in a manner that does not jeopardize safety or […] bring embarrassment or liability to the department."

    Overman's complaint further alleged that Aiken “sees the incident as something of a joke,” claiming that Trooper Aiken had attempted to get the state police repair shop to give him a piece of his damaged bumper. The damage, of course, was from hitting Lt. Overman — who alleged that Aiken intended to turn whatever he received into a commemorative plaque.

    Arkansas watchdog journalist Russ Racop, author of the Bad Government in Arkansas blog, reported in late-September 2017 that "on Thursday, September 21, 2017 Arkansas State Police Troop L staff were instructed to pull Trooper Aiken from pursuits he tries to join and to terminate any pursuits he begins, except in extreme cases." It is unclear when that instruction was rescinded.

    Racop's original report, video of the incident, and much more, can be found at rwp.yt/aiken.

  2. This trooper should have a desk job. He is reckless, more interested in bumper cars than professional police driving. Sad to see…too many great troopers get embarrassed by these kinds of "cowboys".

  3. I disagree with the description. The reason criminals are so brazen today is becuase cops don't do whats needed. We need more cops like this willing to pursue and detain and not allow criminals to go free. We need tough cops not policatical pussys.

  4. Boy, this guy is in bad physical condition, he ran for like a 100 feet and he's choking he can't breathe enough air… and, and he doesn't look like some with big 500 pound belly..

  5. Wow, this was in Springdale, AR, 30 minutes from me. I'm glad the guy didn't hit a car head on and kill a family when he jumped the railroad tracks. That was close. This chase put way more people in danger than it could have possibly protected.

  6. That was a really dangerous pursuit. Glad the dirt bag got caught but that was an extremely risky situation all over a traffic infraction. He got clocked at 125 in a 65 and then the pursuit they go over 80mph in a 25 zone!! – plus 140mph on the highway. Yeah he was DWI in the end but if they terminated the pursuit he would’ve went right home, stopped driving, and they could’ve caught him another day. Glad nobody innocent got hurt in this.

    Edit: No surprises that the officer in this pursuit is under scrutiny for his pursuit history – past and present. I guess someone agrees with my take on this.

  7. Cops put more people at risk than any "criminal" in human history. They just got a guy killed, and a family seriously injured because they chased someone over a broken taillight here in WI. If the cop didn't chase the person, they wouldnt have went 110mph through town. Get the plate number and get them later.

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