A Thomaston man is facing numerous charges after leading police on a high speed chase through two counties that ended after he ran over spike strips that flattened his tires. The Thomaston police car involved in the chase was damaged when it collided with the other vehicle.
Carlton King is facing a total of 10 charges, ranging from Felony Fleeing and Attempting to Elude a Police Officer, Driving with a Suspended License, to Driving Under the Influence (DIUI).
According to Thomaston Police Captain Sidney Corley, the incident began Nov. 22 about 1:30 a.m. when Thomaston Police Officer Matthew Allen attempted to stop a vehicle traveling south on Highway 19 near the Southern Crescent Technical School campus.
“When he activated his blue lights, the vehicle immediately took off,” Corley said. “They continued down 19 South into Taylor County. They got well into Taylor County and the driver braked heavily to make a U-turn, and the officer, as he was trying to follow the suspect, ended up in the grass.”
Captain Corley said once the police car hit the wet grass, it lost traction and ended up hitting the suspect’s vehicle in the left rear quarter panel, spinning it around. Both vehicles remained operable.
“The chase continued northbound, headed back up into Upson County,” Corley continued. “He was the only officer in the chase. At that time, nobody had caught up to them. They were running well over 100 miles an hour the entire time.
“Once they got back into Upson County, Upson County SO had laid out spike strips. They were able to puncture the tires of the vehicle being chased, and he came to a stop with the tires deflated.”
The chase left the Thomaston Police car with about $3,800 worth of damage to its right front quarter panel.
A Thomaston man caught driving on a suspended license will not be getting his license back anytime after leading Sheriff’s deputies on a high speed chase.
According to an incident report by Deputy Mario Cromer, about 2:15 p.m. on Nov. 16 he was patrolling on Atwater Road when he saw a blue 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix GT go by. He recognized the driver as Christopher Wayne Ledford. Dep. Cromer stated in his report that was familiar with the man because he had arrested him in October for driving while his license was suspended.
As he began to give chase, Dep. Comer said the vehicle increased its speed and crossed over the fog line on the roadway. He radioed in his pursuit. The vehicle turned onto Willingham Spring Road and continued at a high rate of speed, weaving over the roadway. Dep. Cromer lost sight of it as it rounded a curve and contacted Dep. Kody Kennedy, advising him of the situation and asking him to check David Road while Cromer checked Bonds Road.
Dep. Cromer spotted the vehicle sitting in a driveway at a house on Bonds Road, with the driver not in sight. Kennedy and another deputy arrived to assist. They checked the area, but could not find Ledford. The tag on the vehicle came back to a female. When they contacted her, she said she had given the keys to Ledford and said she would contact him and try to get him to turn himself in. Ledford made contact with Dep. Kennedy and said he could pick him up on Atwater Road.
Ledford, age 34, was charged with Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer, Driving While License Suspended or Revoked, Reckless Driving, Weaving or Roadway, and Improper Signal.
Larry Stanford may be reached at 706-647-5414 or on Twitter @LarryStanford7.