ATV driver leads law on wild ride

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 29, 2004

The Red Level Police Department spent almost an hour Thursday night chasing down an alleged reckless driver.

On Thursday, Jan. 15 at approximately 5:52 p.m., Officer Jeff Daniels of the RLPD attempted to stop the driver of a four-wheel all-terrain vehicle at the intersection of South Pines Road and Covington County Road 82 - the Gantt/Red Level Highway.

"The driver of the four-wheeler, Noah Elmore, attempted to elude Officer Daniels," Red Level Police Chief David Anderson said. "Elmore failed to yield to the blue lights (of Officer Daniels' patrol car) and was all over the road, driving erratically. He turned onto Sellers Pond Road, a dirt road, and Officer Daniels lost him in a clay pit."

Chief Anderson himself then joined the pursuit.

"I came on at Alabama Highway 55," Chief Anderson said. "The subject attempted to hit me head on. I pursued him down Alabama 55, where he was driving on the shoulder of the road. We again tried to stop him, this time at the intersection of Alabama 55 and County Road 107, where he again almost hit my patrol car."

According to Chief Anderson, Elmore then crossed the four lanes of traffic on Alabama 55 while riding on only two wheels. He crossed a clay pit on Old Highway 55, riding south in the northbound lane. He then rode up an embankment and back onto Sellers Pond Road.

"Traffic was having to avoid hitting him," Chief Anderson said. "He went into a field at the intersection of South Pines Road and Sellers Pond Road, where we couldn't follow him in patrol cars."

Additional officers joined the chase at this time, setting up observation points.

"The Covington County Sheriff's Posse located the four-wheeler in a food plot off of South Pines Road, where it had been abandoned by the subject. The vehicle was impounded and found to belong to Noah DeWayne Elmore, 26, of Opp, whom we found in a local restaurant."

Elmore was arrested at approximately 6:43 p.m. and charged with four counts of reckless endangerment, which carries a $1000 fine for each charge. He was also issued approximately 10 traffic citations from both Chief Anderson and Officer Daniels.

Jessica Marie Bush, 21, of Red Level, was also arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and obstruction of a government operation.

"On South Pines Road, the subject's girlfriend used her vehicle to block Officer Daniels' patrol car so the subject could get away," Chief Anderson said. "She swerved her truck in front of Officer Daniels, causing him to go into a ditch."

Though Bush was not involved in the entire chase, officers knew her identity because she was stopped by Officer Kevin Owens of the Gantt Police Department earlier that day.

"Elmore was with her, wearing the same clothes that he was wearing when we arrested him last night (Thursday)," said Chief Anderson.

Bush later bonded out.

"The subject was driving erratically, not wearing a helmet, and putting everyone on the roads at risk," Chief Anderson said. "Thankfully, no one was hurt."

The 22nd Judicial Drug Task Force, the Gantt Police Department, the Covington County Sheriff's Department, the River Falls Police Department, and the Covington County Sheriff's Posse assisted the Red Level Police Department in the situation.