Saturday, September 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Ultimate botched drug run: From the beginning

Blake Bills, 24, and Shayna Sykes, 23,
Blake Bills, 24, and Shayna Sykes, 23,
Blake Bills, 24, and Shayna Sykes, 23, Gallery: Lehigh County couple goes on crime spree

Blake Bills and Shayna Sykes, who disappeared from their small hometown — a suburb of Allentown — several days ago, seemed to be pretty familiar with Philadelphia.

Reports trickling out, mostly on blogs and through mining their social media presences on Twitter and Facebook, suggest Bills and Sikes may have even lived in Philly at some point in the last couple years. Sykes, 23, worked at a popular Northern Liberties bar for at least one summer.

When did it all take a sudden turn for the worse? 

Detailed accounts of their alleged three-day crime spree, starting Sunday with a failed heroin purchase and ending Tuesday in North Philadelphia after the infamous car chase, were released Wednesday afternoon by law enforcement on both sides of the Delaware River.

Here is a timeline of the events that occurred along a fast and furious descent into madness for a young couple who are parents to a 7-month-old son:

  • 1:20 p.m., Sunday (March 3): A Camden police officer observed Bills and Sykes attempting to purchase drugs in the area near Third and Erie streets in Camden. He attempted to stop the Mazda the couple was driving in, but they fled on Interstate 676. The police car was damaged during the pursuit and the couple fled. The officer driving that car was injured when the vehicle rolled over while attempting to make a sharp turn in pursuit of the couple. He wasn't seriously injured.
  • 1 p.m., Monday: A food deliveryman reported a white female jumped in his Nissan Altima as it was idling in the 1000 block of North Hancock Street in Northern Liberties. Philadelphia police said Tuesday they have identified Sykes and Bills as responsible for stealing the deliveryman's Altima.
  • 12 to 2 a.m., Tuesday: Sykes and Bills were found by a Camden police officer sitting in a disabled vehicle at Fourth and State streets. The officer initially asked if they needed help, but received a call for service. He left to respond to that call, telling the couple he would return. When he did, he found an empty car. When he ran the plates on the vehicle about 3:30 a.m., it came back stolen from Philadelphia.
  • 9:30 a.m.: Bills and Sykes allegedly attempted to steal a woman’s car at Third and Market streets in Camden. They tried opening the door of the car, but it was locked and they were not able to get inside.
  • 9:49 a.m.: Camden Police stopped a vehicle at Haddon and Federal streets in Camden. The lone officer was conducting a traffic stop on an unrelated vehicle when Bills and Sykes allegedly jumped into the officer’s vehicle, striking the officer as they fled. For the next  30 minutes, they lead police in two states on a chase, all the while followed overhead by television news helicopters, eventually stopping at Seventh and Norris streets in Philadelphia. Sykes somehow eludes officers there, allegedly jumping into a city police cruiser and heading off once again.
  • 10:30 a.m.: Sykes finally ends her run, but not before crashing into several vehicles. She is arrested at North Hope and Wildey streets.

Less than 24 hours after Sykes allegedly stole the food deliveryman's Nissan Altima on North Hancock Street, she was arrested roughly a block away from the Piazza at Schmidts where she worked at a bar in the summer of 2011.


Contact Brian X. McCrone at 215-854-2267 or bmccrone@philly.com. Follow @brianxmccrone on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.

Brian X. McCrone PHILLY.COM
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