A Macon man was captured and arrested after reportedly leading Monroe County deputies on a high-speed chase for the third time in eight years.
“This ain’t his first rodeo,” said sheriff Brad Freeman.
According to the report, Nicholas Calvin Johnson, 35, was driving a 2016 Dodge Charger with dark window tint when he fled from deputy Larry Sullivan on I-75 south near Johnstonville Road. Johnson activated his flashers, changed lanes twice and quickly accelerated in the left lane, driving erratically, moving all the way across the interstate, passing traffic on both the left and right shoulders. He continued to drive recklessly to the I-475 split, driving through the median several times at speeds in excess of 140 mph.
Cpl. Tyler Rodgers began to catch up to Johnson near Riverside Drive and performed a P.I.T. maneuver on the fleeing vehicle. The Charger spun to the right and came to a rest on Riverside Drive near Pierce Avenue and Johnson exited the vehicle and began fleeing on foot, running south on Riverside Drive.
Rodgers began pursuing Johnson on foot, loudly instructing him to stop and get onto the ground. As Rodgers started to catch up to Johnson, he turned around and faced him. Rodgers again ordered him to the ground, but Johnson ignored his commands and continued to move backwards, and the corporal deployed his taser which hit Johnson in his stomach. He then fell onto the grass beside the sidewalk and was handcuffed. Deputies learned he was wanted in Bibb County.
Around 5 pounds and 6 ounces of suspected cocaine was found packaged in 2 vacuum-sealed bags inside of a suitcase in the trunk of the Charger. In the same suitcase, deputies also found 1 pound and 1 ounce of marijuana. In a backpack found in the backseat of the vehicle, a small plastic bottle containing suspected THC wax was located. Also in the backpack was a scale, small rubber bands, numerous plastic baggies and $21,061 in cash.
Deputy Wade Kendrick requested a blood test, but Johnson denied consent and said he wanted a lawyer. Warrants were sought against him for fleeing, trafficking cocaine, distributing marijuana and possession of a controlled substance. He was also cited for multiple traffic violations including DUI-refusal.
Monroe County deputies later learned that they had chased Johnson on two previous occasions. One was on July 3, 2017 when then-Lt. Brad Freeman, now the sheriff, clocked Johnson at 96 mph in a Chevrolet Camaro near Rumble Road on I-75 south. Johnson increased his speed to well over 125 mph and stayed on I-75, passing numerous vehicles in the emergency lane. Freeman was hampered in his pursuit by motorists not yielding and lost contact with the vehicle at the Bibb-Monroe County line and had to end his pursuit.
Johnson’s Camaro had a temporary tag from Youmans Chevrolet in Macon, and when deputy John Thompson found the Camaro had been sold to Johnson a warrant was issued. Johnson was also charged with fleeing Bibb County deputies later in 2017.
Thompson was familiar with Johnson as he had chased him on Oct. 29, 2013 after Thompson clocked him doing 88 mph in a white Ford Crown Victoria on I-75 south again near Johnstonville Road. Johnson then activated his flashers and slowed to around 60 mph, periodically tapping his brakes as if he were going to pull over. As he approached the North Lee Street exit, Johnson took the exit and tapped his brakes as if he were going to stop but rolled through the stop sign at Collier Road and turned left towards Forsyth, continuing at around 55 mph.
Johnson turned right onto Harold Hill Road and slowed as he approached the intersection at Old Indian Springs Road. He then put the vehicle into park, opened the door and exited holding a black plastic bag in his right hand and ran around to the front of the car and fled on foot.
He was soon found by Sgt. Kirk Seckinger hiding between two buildings on Harold Hill Road. As Seckinger closed in on him, Johnson took off running towards a house on Old Indian Springs Road where Thompson found him trying to enter a home. Thompson then pulled his service weapon and ordered him to get on his stomach, but Johnson just stood there with his hands out in front of him. The deputy then holstered his weapon and took him to the ground and arrested him. Thompson noticed a strong odor of marijuana coming from his clothing and found a Georgia ID card in his pants along with a stack of currency totaling $751.
After securing Johnson, Thompson returned to the wood line and found the black baggie near a fence containing powdered cocaine as well as 3 vacuum sealed bags of marijuana that weighed 4.5 ounces. In this incident, Johnson was cited for speeding, failure to signal, following too closely, failure to stop at a sign, fleeing, and driving without a license. Warrants were also taken out against him for the possession of cocaine and distributing marijuana.