The son of a South Norwalk anti-poverty agency president has been arrested on drug possession charges and held on more than a $250,000 after allegedly fleeing from police and falsely reporting that his car was stolen after police had lost the vehicle during the chase.
Larry Lamar Stephenson, 25, of Wilton fled in his 2003 Jeep Liberty when officers from the Narcotics and Organized Crime squad arrived on Lawn Avenue in Stamford at about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday to patrol the neighborhood plagued with drug dealing and calls to police about shots fired, according to Stamford Police Capt. Richard Conklin.
Stephenson is the son of Chiquita Stephenson, the acting president of Norwalk Economic Opportunity Now, or NEON.
Police followed the Jeep, their cruiser lights and sirens activated, on East Main Street to Elm Street then north onto Interstate 95 and then south on the highway before they lost sight of the vehicle in heavy traffic. The vehicle was later found abandoned in Stamford on Tresser Boulevard with front-end damage to the car.
About 30 minutes later, Stephenson called State Police to report that his Jeep had been stolen, Conklin said. Stephenson said he could not meet with police because he had "warrant issues," Conklin said. He had three active failure-to-appear arrest warrants, police said, as well as a missed probation violation hearing at the Stamford courthouse last week.
Later still, Stephenson was seen sitting on a wall on Lawn Avenue, where the chase had begun, and when he saw police he fled on foot, Conklin said.
Officers chased him through several back lawns and over a few fences while he threw off the gray hooded sweatshirt he was wearing, according to the report.
They finally caught up to him behind some businesses on the south side of East Main Street in a wooded area next to I-95. Inside Stephenson's car police said they found a prescription container containing 20 narcotic painkillers and a small amount of crack cocaine.
Stephenson was charged with engaging police in pursuit, reckless driving, possession of narcotics, resisting arrest, sale of certain illegal drugs and falsely reporting an incident.
At his arraignment, Judge Gary White -- the same judge before whom Stephenson was supposed to appear at his probation hearing last week -- set Stephenson's bond for the chase at $300,000. Stephenson is also being held on an additional $115,000 on other court cases that he has missed.
With Stephenson's mother sitting in the courtroom, Senior Assistant State's Attorney Paul Ferencek said the accused had violated probation by continuing to use illegal drugs, and that he never made restitution for a 2006 armed robbery, for which he was sentenced to six years in jail.
Stephenson's lawyer, Philip Russell, told White that his client was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and asked that he be given treatment through the corrections system.
White requested that Stephenson be given substance abuse evaluation and testing.