CARROLL COUNTY, Ga - Dash camera video captured a dangerous exchange between a Carroll County deputy and a teenage suspect accused of firing at him during a high-speed chase on Highway 27. Now, the 16-year-old suspect is potentially looking at up to 88 years in prison.
"People say ‘routine traffic stop’…nothing’s routine," Carroll County Sheriff’s Office Communication’s Director Ashley Hulsey told FOX 5.
The early morning traffic stop on June 22 took a scary turn for Deputy Archie Barber, who said he clocked a 2004 Tan Chevy Silverado going 20 mph over the speed limit.
"Seventy-something miles per hour…it’s a 55 mile per hour zone, so he goes to pull this suspect vehicle over," Hulsey said.
Video showed the driver complied once the deputy turned on his emergency lights, but within seconds of getting out of his patrol car, the suspect took off.
Hulsey said the chase which followed lasted more than 20 minutes before the driver, identified as 16-year-old Damion King O’Neal Patterson, pulled out a gun and fired shots at the deputy.
"This individual sticks his hand out the window, produces a handgun, and fires five rounds striking the deputy’s vehicle," she explained.
Authorities told FOX 5 they learned the firearm and the truck were both stolen from the same home in Heard County.
"We don’t really know what motivated him, but we do know when we interviewed him, he was intending to harm the deputy, and that was very evident in the video," Hulsey said.
Officials said the deputy did not return fire and was not injured. After Patterson crashed the truck, investigators said he ran and managed to get away. He was caught the next day, on Friday.
Hulsey told FOX 5 it’s a cautionary tale for parents to keep a closer eye on what their children are getting into this summer and an important reminder for residents not to leave their keys or weapons inside a vehicle.
"Make sure you’re keeping those put away, so they don’t get in the hands of people like this 16-year-old juvenile," she said.
Patterson is being charged as an adult. He had his first appearance in court Monday where a judge read the lengthy list of charges he’s facing.
The teen has been charged with criminal attempt to commit murder, aggravated assault against a law enforcement officer, criminal Interference with government property, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, theft by receiving firearm, theft by receiving motor vehicle, reckless conduct, fleeing and attempting to elude, reckless driving, and speeding.