A former surgeon in training who is a suspect in the stalking of an 18-year-old woman was captured Thursday night by a fugitive task force.
A U.S. marshal and several Charleston County sheriff's deputies chased down Karl Leonard Ehrens in a pursuit that ended off Glenn McConnell Parkway a few miles from his home.
Ehrens, 29, was wanted on first-degree harassment charges after stuffed animals were left July 20 in boxes stacked in a driveway where the woman moved to escape being stalked. The animals resembled the images of dolls embedded in Internet messages she received from Ehrens, she told police.
Authorities described ongoing harassment of the woman since a chance meeting with the suspect. She has a restraining order against Ehrens, according to the Charleston County Sheriff's Office, and has filed a number of reports about him. The boxes had her in fear for her safety.
The pursuit started near Ehrens' Bent Hickory Road home in Grand Oaks Plantation. The marshal had staked out the home. He spotted a black sports car belonging to Ehrens about 9:30 p.m. Deputies converged and five squad cars were on the scene when Ehrens was captured at the Sabal Palms apartment complex near West Ashley High School.
"We've got one on the ground," a deputy reported over the radio.
A news release earlier in the day from the Medical University of South Carolina stated that Ehrens started a residency program in general surgery on July 1, 2008; he left the program on Feb. 9, 2009. The release did not say why he left. The training is a five-year program at MUSC.
Ehrens' Facebook wall page carries a series of photos, including vulgarities painted on the car and an apparent black eye and bruises on his face while he takes his own photograph. He lists himself as a musician and physician. The information page lists him as a graduate student at "MUSC '08, MD."
His MySpace page lists his most recent comment as May 8. It reads: "Cuts like a knife... guess you will just have to look me in the eye. ... I saw it for myself. Mood: shot through the (heart)."
The woman found the three boxes the day she moved from her former address, according to a police affidavit and report. Also in the boxes was paperwork referring to the suspect being reinstated at MUSC and results indicating that he had passed a polygraph test.