Felony Hit-and-Run Investigation in the Independence Division


Charlotte, N.C. – (Tuesday, October 12, 2021) – Detectives with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's Independence Division have charged a suspect after he caused two hit-and-run vehicle crashes, the second which caused a police vehicle to overturn.

Shortly before 7:10 a.m. on October 11, 2021, the driver of a Hyundai Santa Fe rear-ended a passenger vehicle on Independence Boulevard near Sharon Forest Drive.  Following the collision, the driver of the Hyundai fled the scene in his vehicle, and the other party involved called 911 to report the incident.  This crash was documented under 20211011-0709-01.

Moments later, the driver of the Hyundai ran a red light at the intersection of Monroe Road and Village Lake Drive.  At the same time, a marked CMPD police vehicle was travelling through the intersection on a green light and was struck by the Hyundai.  The collision forced the police vehicle to overturn onto its roof, and the driver of the Hyundai fled from his vehicle on foot.  Officers in the Independence Division responded to this crash and worked with the CMPD's Canine Unit to track the suspect.

The suspect was not located during the track, so detectives in the Independence Division began conducting the investigation.  The investigation identified Joseph Spangler, DOB: 01/19/1993, as the driver of the Hyundai, and determined he had been driving on the wrong side of the road and cutting vehicles off immediately prior to running the red light and striking the police vehicle.

While the investigation was still under way, a community member called 911 to report someone who appeared injured had walked out of a nearby wood line.  Officers responded and continued their investigation, ultimately locating Spangler at a residence on Dunfries Road.  Spangler, who had sustained minor injuries as a result of the crash, was taken to the hospital to be treated and then was interviewed by detectives.  Following this interview, the suspect was transferred to the custody of the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office and charged with felony hit and run, misdemeanor hit and run, reckless driving and driving with a revoked license.

The officer driving the police vehicle sustained non-life-threatening injuries as a result of the crash and was transported to the hospital to be treated.

The investigation into this case is active and ongoing.  As additional information develops, it will be released by the CMPD's Public Affairs Office.  Anyone who witnessed the crash or has information about this case is asked to call Detective Storc at 704-336-2897.  The public can also leave information anonymously by contacting Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600 or http://charlottecrimestoppers.com/.  For additional information about this case, please refer to the report: 20211011-0712-1.