NewsNational News


Man leaps off bridge in mistaken belief cops are chasing him

Posted at 10:55 AM, Jan 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-04 12:57:28-05

ATLANTA (AP) -- A driver who mistakenly thought Atlanta police were chasing him as they pursued a different speeding motorist crashed his car and jumped 40 feet (12 meters) off a highway bridge to escape.

The driver survived the jump early Thursday and ran into a wooded area. On Friday, Davaughn Clarke, 25, turned himself in to Atlanta police. He was taken to a hospital detention center and eventually will be transported to the Fulton County Jail, police spokeswoman Tasheena Brown said in a statement.

Brown said Clarke will face several charges, including speeding, reckless driving, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm during/attempt to commit certain felonies. It was unknown if he has an attorney.

The chase began just after 1 a.m. Thursday when officers attempted to pull over someone else on I-85, WSB-TV reported. The second driver mistakenly thought police were after him, and sped off, crashing his car in the process. He then got out and began running down the highway, Capt. William Ricker told news outlets.

In police dash camera video released Thursday, the suspect can be seen darting in and out of traffic as an officer follows him in a patrol car. The suspect rushes to a concrete median and jumps on it before crossing all lanes of the highway and plunging over the guard rail.

Officers looked along train tracks below the bridge, but didn't find the man. A gun was found under the bridge and drugs were recovered from his car, news outlets reported.