Man arrested after foot chase; Burnt-out car found near landfill

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Early last Friday morning, Bainbridge Public Safety arrested a man suspected of breaking into multiple cars in the Ridgefield Place subdivision, according to BPS incident reports.

At about 3 a.m. last Friday, BPS Officer Toby Miller responded to the 200 block of West Broughton Street in downtown Bainbridge, after two young males reported hearing someone on the porch of their home. They stated they had walked outside and observed a man steal their bicycle and head toward West Bainbridge on the Calhoun Street bridge.

Miller caught up with a man on a bike matching the boys’ description of the suspect at the intersection of Dothan Road and Butler Ferry Road. Miller activated his patrol car’s lights, which caused the man — later identified as Javarrus Martell Lawrence, 21, 105 Dow Jones Road, Bainbridge — to jump off the bike, drop a bag he had been carrying and run down a hill and through a ditch that had recently been cleared of trees and brush.

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Miller circled around in front of Lawrence, who stopped. The officer got out of his car, readied his Taser electric shock weapon and ordered Lawrence to stay put. At the officer’s instruction, Lawrence began walking out of the ditch and back up to the Flint River bridge, where another officer was waiting. Lawrence attempted to pick up his bike and flee, but Officer John Mills ordered him to the ground and the suspect was taken into custody.

Miller walked over to where Lawrence had left his bike and found a jacket laying on top of an assault rifle which was determined to belong to Bainbridge Public Safety. A BPS officer who lives in the Ridgefield Place subdivision, off Hubert Dollar Drive, discovered later on Friday that his patrol car, which had been parked outside his house, had been broken into.

During the day, BPS Chief Investigator Capt. Frank Green went back to the location where Lawrence had been arrested and also found a women’s shoulder bag containing other items that had been reported stolen from vehicles in the same subdivision.

Among the items was a digital camera that had not been reported stolen. BPS officers were able to look through the camera’s images and determine its possible owner, who later confirmed it had been taken from her car on Ridgefield Drive. The theft victim told police her daughter had woken her up around 2 a.m. that morning after hearing noises outside.

Lawrence was reportedly highly combative with BPS officers while he was being transported to BPS headquarters and later to the Decatur County Jail. He had to have his arms and legs restrained for his own safety while in a holding cell at BPS, and twice tried to strangle himself using a t-shirt and a seat belt. He was placed in a padded cell once at the county jail.

He was charged with theft by taking, obstruction of an officer, and possession of arms by convicted felon or first offender probationer.


Burnt-out car found near landfill

The Sheriff’s Office is investigating an apparent arson after a deputy found a burnt-out car on an abandoned mine roadway in southern Decatur County.

Last Friday afternoon, Lt. Rick Ashley was patrolling on U.S. Highway 27 South near the county landfill when he found a burned-out Cadillac on an abandoned Englehard Mine road accessible from the highway. Ashley noted that the car, which was destroyed beyond recognition, appeared to have been left there sometime within the previous two days. In addition, the car’s vehicle identification number and tag had been burnt off.

The Sheriff’s Office crime scene investigators processed the scene for evidence and the car was towed away.