Police chases seemed almost the order of the day this weekend, as two criminals tried to get away from officers or deputies.
The first chase happened Friday morning. It started in Alexander County, after a 2001 Buick LeSabre was reported stolen. The driver led Alexander county deputies on a chase, and as the car approached Wilkes County, local deputies joined in. The woman ran a Wilkes sheriff detective off the side of Treadway Road, damaging his county car. She kept on trying to get away, and the remaining deputy pursued her to Moore Mountain Road, where she ran into the ditch and stopped.
But it wasn’t over.
The woman threw the car into reverse and rammed the deputy’s crusier, then took off again. This time, an Alexander county deputy led the pursuit, with the Wilkes county deputy right behind. Again, the woman pulled over and the deputies stopped. Again, she rammed the Wilkes patrol car. For good measure, she tried to run again, but found she was boxed in by the deputies. So she slammed into the Wilkes patrol car a third time. Deputies were finally able to pull her from the car and subdue her.
The 30-year old woman, who was not identified by Wilkes county authorities, is charged locally with assault using a deadly weapon and damage to county property. She’s charged in Alexander County with the original car theft, fleeing to avoid arrest, and assault on law officers. Damage to the Wilkes County patrol car is valued at 600-dollars. All the woman ever hit was the pusher bumper on the front of the cruiser.
The second chase was much shorter, only a couple of miles. It happened first thing yesterday morning. Wilkesboro police received a report of a stolen 1988 GMC Jimmy. John Eller Junior said a man approached him at the Citgo station at Highway 421 and 16, asking for a ride up 16. Eller refused, and went inside, leaving the Jimmy running outside. The man followed him inside, asked again, and when he was refused again, he went outside, climbed in the running S-U-V, and sped off.
A short time later, sheriff deputies saw the S-U-V and gave chase. A deputy clocked the driver at 65 miles an hour in a 35 zone, as the driver sped up Highway 16 North. The deputy also says the driver swerved across the center line several times during the chase.
It came to an end at Canterbury Estates, where the driver was arrested without incident. Police officers arrested 19-year old Anthony Wayne Sheppard of Moravian Falls and charged him with stealing the Jimmy, along with damage to personal property. That’s because he drover the Jimmy so hard that when Eller was taken to pick it up, it wouldn’t start because the engine was seized.
Jail Jumpsuit for Halloween?
From the stupid criminals file: it was bad enough that a jail inmate chose to take a couple of jumpsuits when he was released. Then he had to go and wear them out to the Fast Track in Miller’s Creek Saturday morning, where he walked up to a deputy. The story goes downhill from there.
The quick-thinking thief admitted where he’d gotten the jumpsuit pants when the deputy asked. When questioned further, Adam Nichols told the deputy the jail had lost the clothes staff members had taken when Nichols was arrested for another crime, so they told him he could keep the jumpsuits until Monday.
After being arrested for stealing the jumpsuit, Nichol’s story changed. He admitted taking the jumpsuit because he planned to wear it trick-or-treating on Halloween. Best guess is, he won’t be doing much trick-or-treating this year.
As we reported yesterday on 3WC News, identity theft is one of the fastest-growing areas of crime in Wilkes. A local woman filed an identity theft report Friday, so her bank would reimburse her the 35-hundred dollars she lost. She says the thief got her account information, and used it to write themselves a check via her online bill-pay service. The suspect is in Seattle, Washington.
Excavator Wiring Harness Cut Out
A North Wilkesboro business found out the hard way this weekend that it’s a good idea to make sure equipment on a job site is secure. Sheriff Deputies say someone cut the wiring harness out of an excavator belonging to Holly Mountain Hauling, which was on a job site in rural Wilkes County. The site is in a wooded area, far enough from the road that the equipment can’t be seen by passing traffic. The incident, which happened sometime Thursday night or early Friday, will set Holly Mountain back about two thousand dollars, much of the expense due to the fact that someone has to come to the job site to make the repair.
Gang ties are blamed for a shooting incident in Wilkes County late Friday. Julio Cabrera says three men from a New York gang shot up his house, a car and a pickup, but fortunately didn’t hit any people. One of the shots fired penetrated the walls of the mobile home, crossed a hallway, and lodged in a child’s closet wall. Another lodged in an unoccupied room. Cabrera tells sheriff deputies the men were from a New York gang, and were looking for his cousin. He told deputies the names of the men, but so far there have been no arrests.
Forsyth County Earthquake
Residents of Forsyth County woke up today to an earthquake. It was a 2-point-6 quake on the Richter scale, according to the U-S Geological Survey. That fits in the category of a “micro” quake – one weak enough that it’s unlikely to have caused any significant damage, and no injuries have been reported. Heavy sleepers might not even have noticed, as the quake happened about 5 a-m. The epicenter is calculated to be three miles east-northeast of Winston-Salem.
Egg Salad Recall
If you have a container of Ballard’s Farm egg salad, authorities say you should get rid of it or return it to where you bought it. Listeria contamination was found in a container of the egg salad tested recently at a Wal-mart in Wake county, prompting state and federal health officials to issue a recall notice. The egg salad of concern is sold at Wal-mart and other retailers, and has a “Best if used by 11/07/06” label on it.
While listeria causes flu-like symptoms in healthy adults, the bacterium can cause fatal illness in children, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems.