An Atlanta-area murder suspect crashed his car in Thomson following a multi-county chase last week, and faces multiple charges locally.
Joshua Z. Hazelton, 18, of Atlanta, was charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, interference with government property, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony and felony fleeing following the Jan. 18 chase.
The chase began around 8:25 a.m., the Georgia State Patrol began pursuit of a black Daewoo Leganza with a Dekalb County tag east of I-20 into Columbia County at speeds of 130 miles per hour. The chase turned back toward McDuffie County before reaching the Appling-Harlem Exit.
According to Thomson Police Chief John Hathaway, Mr. Hazelton came through the intersection of Cobbham Road and Harrison Road in Thomson when he ran head on into Officer Don Hilson's patrol car.
The suspect then ran into the woods where he was later caught. Norris Elementary School, which is near the site of the incident, went into lock-down until police captured Mr. Hazelton.
Officer Hilson's hand was bruised in the incident and was x-rayed as a precautionary measure. TPD officers later found the weapon involved in the original Morgan County shooting while searching the swampy wooded area near the intersection.
Mr. Hazelton is also wanted on murder charges in DeKalb County. He is also a suspect in a Morgan County rage shooting that happened in the hours before the Jan. 18 chase.