Robbery suspect rampages in semi truck - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Robbery suspect rampages in semi truck

The driver's side of the truck, showing what's left of the rim, and bullet holes, forming the shape of a cross. The driver's side of the truck, showing what's left of the rim, and bullet holes, forming the shape of a cross.
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June 3, 2005

Tifton-- The cab of the semi truck landed along Interstate 82 in Tifton without its front tires after a wild, four county chase at top speeds.

"He was wide open sparks flying everywhere. You can follow him from the East side of Tifton up to here where he just dug into the pavement where the tires were digging in, but he didn't have any tires," said Kenny Young, a witness.

Witnesses were shocked when they saw the truck driven by Travis White barreling along Highway 82 at speeds of 80 miles per hour without any front tires. White left a scarred trail along the roadway, but police tried to stop him before he could get into the heart of Tifton.

"We took off and headed towards the chase to actually try and help prevent the chase from getting into the city," said Sergeant. James Partain, Tift County Sheriff's Department.

At the Berrien, Tift County line police made their best efforts to stop the truck.

"We had to resort to firing our weapons at the tires," said GSP Sergeant. Don Whitaker.

"He jumped out of the car and pulled his gun out and we were turning the car around and he went to pumping them at him," said Jack Lee, who also witnessed the chase.

The left front tire already gone, police were able to flatten some of the rear tires with their shots and Stop sticks, but the truck continued.

"When he came by, you could see the driver and he was bowed up holding the wheel, just like that, it was all he could do to hold it on the road I guess," said Lee. White's truck crossed the center line several times into oncoming traffic, but police were able to keep oncoming cars clear of any danger.

"We were afraid of the tractor trailer getting into a congested area such as Tifton and we knew we had to do something before he got into town and hurt somebody," said Whitaker.

White finally ran into too much traffic and decided to pull the truck into a grassy area just before the Interstate bridge, ending the chase with his arrest.

"This could have been a very bad situation, because with a truck running 80 95 miles per hour coming into town, we had intersections blocked by the city of Tifton Police Department and DOT," said Partain.

White is also facing armed robbery charges for three robberies between midnight and eight Friday morning. He's believe to entered three convenience stores in Pierce and Ware counties claiming to have a gun and demanding money.

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