Roadblock ends in river chase - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Roadblock ends in river chase

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November 21, 2003

Worth County-- A driver turning around at a Georgia State Patrol roadblock on Highway 32 sparked a two hour chase, with a helicopter and dogs.

Troopers did not know why the man ran, but they had to chase him through some rough country to find out why. 

A black Toyota turned around at the GSP roadblock on Highway 32 about 10:30 this morning. Trooper First Class Kyle Long went after him to find out why. The Toyota pulled off on a boat ramp on the Worth County side of the Flint River.

When Long pulled in behind him, the man ran on foot. He ran under the bridge and into Red Oak Plantation. There was some very thick underbrush, so Long called in help.

What the runner did not know was that just up the road, were most of the Department of Corrections Canine units from around South Georgia. The Georgia State Patrol helicopter was already in the air in Albany, and quickly joined the search. The chase went for over three miles, to the edge of Highway 300.

With the dogs close behind and helicopter overhead, the exhausted suspect finally quit running. The Canine unit fired shots to let the other officers know they had their man.

Thirty-five-year old Wayne Lunsford is brought out of the woods in handcuffs, after leading officers on a long chase. But the question still was, why did he run in the first place? After questioning Lunsford, and checking his record Trooper Long finally had his answer. He was a habitual violator, with several DUI's on his record.

There was nothing illegal found in the car. Lunsford was immediately charged with an improper turn and improper signal. He may be charged with flight, but that has not been decided yet.

For sure, Lunsford picked a very bad time and place to run. Wayne Lunsford is being held in the Worth County Jail.

posted at 2:45PM by dave.miller@walb.com