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ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- The St. Augustine Police Department has arrested a man after he beat up a cab driver and then stole his taxi.

Police were called to Carmelo's on King Street shortly after 5:30 a.m. Thursday morning, according to a news release from St. Augustine Police Public Information Officer Mark Samson.

Samson said surveillance video viewed by the police department shows 22-year-old Eugene Wilson from Warner Robbins, Ga., kneeing a cab driver in the parking lot of the store.

With Wilson pursuing him, the cab driver ran inside the store and threw his money bag to the store clerk. Samson said Wilson then chased the cab driver around the store before a second yellow cab arrived at the store.

Wilson then became involved in a physical altercation with the second cab driver. Samson said at this point, Wilson got into the taxi cab and drove off, heading east on King Street.

Police were interviewing the taxi driver when the stolen taxi was seen driving westbound on King Street. Officers then received an updated report that the cab was traveling on King Street, west of Ponce de Leon Boulevard.

An officer with the St. Augustine Police Department saw the taxi cab, being driven by Wilson, drive by at a high rate of speed, Samson said. Shortly after seeing the taxi, that same officer also reported Wilson had missed a curve near North Orange Street and had struck a utility pole.

Rescue workers with the St. Johns County Fire Rescue Department had to cut Wilson out of the car. After he was cut free and debris from the crash removed, Wilson was able to exit the vehicle under his own power. Samson said Wilson was taken to Flagler Hospital to be treated.

Wilson has been arrested. He is charged with two counts of battery, one count of motor vehicle theft and one count of attempted robbery.

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