Ithaca, N.Y. — The drunken driver who crashed into Ithaca Police Chief John Barber on Thursday is still wanted, Officer Jamie Williamson said.

Police Chief John Barber’s unmarked vehicle was struck by what police have called a drunken driver. Christopher Rundt is still wanted. (Courtesy of police)

Christopher Rundt, 23, of Ithaca, has not been found since vanishing after the 5:25 p.m. accident on West Clinton Street in the city.

“We believe he’s still in the Ithaca area,” Williamson said Tuesday morning, “but we’ve been unable to located him as of yet.”

Barber was driving an unmarked police vehicle when Rundt, coming from the other direction, turned into Barber’s lane and hit the chief’s car head-on, according to police.

Christopher Rundt is wanted by police

Barber got out of the car. He had suffered minor injuries and talked to Rundt, who apologized for the accident.

Barber started speaking with witnesses of the crash when he realized that Rundt had fled. Rundt hasn’t been found since.

Police say they found an open bottle of rum in Rundt’s Subaru. Witnesses said he appeared intoxicated, according to police.

“It appears that both vehicles are a total loss as a result of the collision,” police said in a press release.

Chief Barber suffered minor injuries and did not have to be transported to the hospital. On the police department’s Facebook page, several people wished the chief well: “So glad that Chief Barber is okay,” one said. “Take care, chief!”

Officer Williamson said that Barber had been experiencing some neck pain but was okay.

Police are asking anyone with information about Rundt’s whereabouts to call them at 607-272-9973.

Jeff Stein

Jeff Stein is the founder and former editor of the Ithaca Voice.