Bunnell, FL - An alert from a License Plate Recognition device gave the Flagler County Sheriff's Office a heads-up about a stolen vehicle that resulted in the arrests of 21-year-old Brian Johnson, 21-year-old Marquis Gross, and 22-year-old Justin King.
Sheriff Rick Staly located the vehicle heading north on U.S. 1 near Belle Terre Parkway and confirmed a match of the license plate number with the stolen tag information. A traffic stop initiated by a marked patrol vehicle was ignored and the suspect vehicle traveled recklessly at high speeds, weaving in and out of traffic and making erratic u-turns on U.S. 1 trying to avoid numerous attempts by deputies to deploy StopSticks.
When the driver attempted to turn east on Royal Palms Parkway, he lost control and crashed into a Penske rental truck. Sheriff Staly and deputies approached the vehicle with guns drawn and ordered the three occupants from the vehicle. Two were quickly detained while the third was trapped in the car due to the collision with the truck.
You can see body cam video of the chase and arrest by clicking here.
“This is another great example of LPR’s helping us capture criminals and prevent them from preying on our community,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “These individuals put lives in danger while they fled trying to avoid being arrested. We are fortunate no one was seriously hurt by their actions.”
All three suspects complained of injuries and were transported to the hospital. The driver of the rental truck suffered minor injuries and was also taken to the hospital.
The investigation shows that the vehicle and license plate were stolen in Gainesville. The three suspects are also from Gainesville. Johnson, identified as the driver, is charged with Grand Theft of a Motor Vehicle, Petit Theft, and Fleeing and Eluding Law Enforcement. He is being held without bond. King and Gross were each arrested and charged with Burglary of a Conveyance for knowingly entering and remaining inside a stolen vehicle with the intent to deprive the owner of his or her property. King and Gross each have a $5,000.00 bond.