A car speeds through city streets, screaming police cruisers in hot pursuit and a helicopter flying above.

The thrilling chase goes against traffic on busy avenues, through parking lots, onto sidewalks and an interstate highway.

Finally, the wanted man throws a bag of contraband out the window, hoping to throw the heat off his tail.

Drugs? Money? Nope — stolen library books.

"The officers were a little taken aback when they found out what the deal was. They couldn't believe it," said Syracuse, N.Y., police spokesman Sgt. Tom Connellan about the chase, which took place Sunday afternoon.

Byron Haynes, 36, of Syracuse, was arraigned Monday, charged with reckless endangerment, petty larceny and reckless driving.

Haynes allegedly ran out of Syracuse University's Bird Library (search) at about 4:30 p.m. Sunday, setting off the building's alarm.

Moments later, an officer saw Haynes running a stop sign in his Ford Expedition and gave chase, reports the Syracuse Post-Standard.

A dozen squad cars soon became involved, and for the next 10 minutes chased Haynes the wrong way onto Erie Boulevard and onto Interstate 690.

"We assumed it was drugs or guns the way he was driving," Connellan said.

Haynes tossed his backpack out the window at one point, but kept going.

Finally, cops abandoned the surface chase simply because it had gotten too dangerous. There ended up being no injuries or property damage.

"It was stupid and reckless," said Connellan.

Police followed the Expedition by helicopter to a city park, where Haynes ditched the car, then ran. He was caught after a short foot pursuit.

"We even brought in a canine to go through the car," Connellan said. "Nothing."

Police located and opened the backpack Haynes allegedly threw out to find five books on Judaism. Connellan did not know their titles or authors.

Haynes gave no explanation for either the alleged theft or the chase. A Syracuse University (search) spokesman said he was not a student at the school.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Inmates Make Beer Run From Jail

ROGERSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — With their cell doors accidentally left unlocked, four county jail inmates escaped only to return the same night — with beer.

The Hawkins County Jail (search) inmates, who bought four cases of beer before returning to the jail, were charged Monday with escape and introduction of intoxicants into a penal institution, the Kingsport Times-News newspaper reported Tuesday.

"I guess they thought if they came back they wouldn't be charged with escape, but they were wrong," Sheriff Warren Rimer said.

Ridgy Dean Coleman, Jimmy Joe Stapleton, David Wayne Blizzard and David Allen Hopkins escaped Thursday night when their cell block doors were unlocked and a faulty control panel failed to alert jailers, Rimer said.

Two of the inmates walked out through a fire exit, left the door propped open with a small Bible and made a hole in the exercise yard fence. They walked to a nearby market and bought the beer.

The inmates did not raise alarm at the store because they were wearing street clothes borrowed from other prisoners. The crowded jail doesn't have enough orange jumpsuits for all of its inmates.

The sheriff pointed out that all 36 inmates on the cell block might have tried to escaped while the doors were unlocked.

"At least they came back," he said.

— Thanks to Out There readers Matt P., Shari S., Mike A., Patrick R., Clay P., Lezlee D. and Tim P.

Cop Shoots at Jaywalker

PRAGUE, Czech Republic (AP) — An angry police officer allegedly shot at a man who ignored a red traffic light and crossed a busy street in a southwestern Czech town, authorities said Tuesday. The bullets missed the pedestrian.

The officer in Plzen (search), 55 miles southwest of Prague, was being investigated by the Interior Ministry for allegedly pulling his gun and firing at the jaywalking pedestrian on Monday, ministry spokesman Petr Vorlicek said.

The unidentified officer fired several rounds after the pedestrian did not react to his shouts of protest, officials said.

The Pravo newspaper reported that the policeman first shot in the air, and when the pedestrian did not react, he allegedly aimed at him and fired two more times.

One bullet hit a passing car, but nobody was injured in the incident, Pravo said.

Sir, You Left Something Behind

LANGHORNE, Pa. (AP) — A man who returned a rental car allegedly forgot to take along 88 bags of heroin he had left in the vehicle.

Employees of an Enterprise Rent-A-Car (search) agency called police and reported finding the drugs hidden under a layer of napkins in the car's console, authorities said.

Using information found in the wallet the man also left behind, Detective Daniel Baranoski of nearby Middletown contacted Robert Laguerre. The detective, posing as someone who had found the heroin, told Laguerre he wanted to return the drugs for a reward, authorities said.

Baranoski set up a meeting with Laguerre at a mall in this Philadelphia suburb, and Laguerre was arrested when he arrived, police said.

Laguerre was arraigned Thursday on charges of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver. He had been released from a New Jersey prison in April after serving time for heroin distribution.

Enterprise spokesman Lee Broughton said people often leave bizarre things in rental cars, but this was the first time he had heard of heroin.

Man Tries to Bribe Way off Evening News

HONG KONG (AP) — Police said Monday they were trying to find a man who crashed a luxury car and then vanished after waving a fistful of money at a TV cameraman to try to bribe his way off the local news.

The man drove the yellow Porsche onto some tram tracks early Sunday, and a news crew from network ATV quickly arrived and began filming, police said.

The man offered the cameraman a pile of 1,000 Hong Kong dollar (U.S. $130) banknotes, the biggest ones circulated here, local media said.

Police spokesman T.K. Ng said the journalist refused the money and the driver left the scene before authorities arrived.

Local newspapers reported that the cameraman was offered about HK$10,000 (U.S. $1,300). Ng said he did not know the amount, and ATV spokeswoman Anita Lui did not immediately return calls from The Associated Press early Monday.

ATV ran the footage, with the man's face obscured. Police have traced the ownership of the abandoned car to a local trading company but said they were still trying to locate the driver.

Gangster Wrapper

TOWN OF WAUKESHA, Wisconsin (AP) — A prankster tightly wound plastic wrap around traffic poles across a two-lane road, causing a motorcycle accident that injured two people.

Daniel Buckel, and his girlfriend, Theresa Brzykcy, were riding south of Waukesha on Tuesday when their motorcycle crashed into the plastic wrap set up about 3 to 4 feet above the road — wound thickly from traffic poles on opposite sides.

Buckel, 22, was within 10 feet when he saw the makeshift barricade, and hit the brakes.

"It's appalling, and it's really frightening," Brzykcy, 19, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "What was their intention? This should make people more aware that pranks like that are not as harmless as they seem."

Buckel was cut above his eye and broke his finger. Brzykcy also suffered scrapes and bruises.

Buckel is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to a conviction.

Last year several parked cars were found bound in plastic wrap to prevent drivers from getting inside, Detective Steve Pederson said.

Compiled by FOXNews.com's Paul Wagenseil.

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