A wild scene in the early morning hours of Smith County as one man from Tyler was taken to the hospital after a pursuit with cops ended in a fiery crash.

According to a press release we received from Sgt. Larry Christian of the Smith County Sherriff's Office, deputies were traveling eastbound on Hwy 31 East just outside the Tyler city limits at about 5:45 AM this morning. While patrolling this area, a vehicle approached them from the rear at a high rate of speed with the hazard lights activated.

The deputy moved to the shoulder of the road as the driver pulled beside the patrol vehicle and swerved toward it. At this time the driver then sped off east on Hwy 31 at a high rate of speed. The driver was extremely reckless and was unable to maintain a single lane of traffic as he continued traveling east.

Deputies began pursuit of the suspect who turned right onto County Road 21 and headed south at a high rate of speed. As the driver approached a curve in the road just south of County Road 26, he lost control of his vehicle and ran off the road into a thickly wooded area on the west side of County Road 21. The suspect's vehicle rolled over and immediately became engulfed in flames.

Smith County Deputies found the suspect trapped in the vehicle and began telling him to exit through the front windshield. The suspect managed to crawl out of the car and deputies then assisted him away from the burning vehicle. Firefighters from several jurisdictions responded to the location and extinguished the burning vehicle.

The suspect was identified as Cederick Billington, 39 of Tyler. Upon the arrival of UT Health EMS, Billington was transported to UT Health Tyler for treatment. His condition is unknown at this time, however, Billington was conscious and alert at the scene.

The report added that this is an ongoing investigation and no charges have been filed at this time.

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