CONYERS, Ga. - It started as an attempted traffic pull over for a man driving without lights. But now Conyers Police suspect the man who fled and another man arrested after he rammed a squad car, could be connected to a larger auto theft ring.
In dash cam video released exclusively to FOX 5 News a truck is seen in front of a squad car. As the officer attempted to pull over the driver a truck suddenly rams the officer’s car.
Both drivers fled.
“He actually intentionally rams our officer on the front passenger quarter panel just before she went to initiate the traffic stop. She's fine a little banged up initially but she's doing well,” said Sgt. Kim Lucas, with the Conyers Police Department.
Sgt. Lucas said Conyers Police and Rockdale County Sheriff Investigators are searching for the man who got away early Friday morning. She said the man who rammed the squad car jumped out of his truck on the side of Interstate 20 at the on ramp from West Avenue then jumped the retainer wall and ran to a Motel 6.
She said once there he paid a customer $10 to drive him to DeKalb County.
“People with the right mind they don't do that. They don't do that,” said Prab Anna, a clerk at the motel.
Police said the motel manager led them to the customer who told police he dropped off the man at a gas station in DeKalb County.
“He was able to tell us where he dropped the suspect off at and we were able to tell DeKalb County, can you go check this location and along with Georgia State Patrol they were able to find him,” said Sgt. Lucas.
Shcharansky Cooper, 20, was arrested. He was charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, theft by receiving, fleeing, obstruction and other charges.
Police said Cooper rammed the squad car to help his accomplice get away. The officer attempted to pull over the man for not having his lights on.
Investigators said Cooper and the other man were both driving trucks which had just been stolen, one from Brookhaven the other in Rockdale County.
“It is safe to assume that this probably wasn't their first go around. They had a plan. Their plan was to come to Conyers and Rockdale County and steal vehicles,” said Sgt. Lucas.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS, There could be a $2,000 reward involved and tipsters can remain anonymous.