Sgt. Hanley, with the Washington County Sheriff's Office, says around 12:20 p.m. police received a complaint of a shoplifter at the Sears Store located on Valley Mall Road.
Police say the description of the suspect, 59-year-old David Christopher Adams, of Hagerstown, Md., matched a person that had been in the store Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday stealing items.
Adam's vehicle, a green 2002 Honda Odyssey van, also matched the description of a stolen vehicle reported in Hagerstown a few days before.
Police say once identified, he fled the scene. A number of officers from the Washington County Sheriff's Office, Maryland State Police, and the Hagerstown Police Department pursued Adams.
When officers attempted to stop Adams, he accelerated away. Police say he got onto I-81 south and turned around in Williamsport and went north on I-81.
Police say Adams then went onto the ramp for Halfway Blvd west but at the top of the ramp turned the wrong way and then started traveling east in the westbound lanes of Halfway Blvd, and then went onto the ramp of northbound I-81.
Police say Adams then went over the emergency crossover on I-81 and was traveling the wrong way in the southbound lanes of I-81.
They say Adams then turned up the ramp from eastbound National Pike to southbound I-81, at which point Adams crashed head-on at high speed into a 2012 Volkswagon Toreg as he was traveling the wrong way on the ramp.
Adams was taken to Meritus Medical Center, and was pronounced dead at the hospital from his injuries. The driver of the Volkswagon, 62-year-old Richard Barrett McGrath, of Smithsburg, Md., was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
The Washington County Sheriff's Office is still investigating this incident.