Thomasville Times Enterprise

Local News

April 30, 2014

Fourth city vehicle theft lands man in jail

THOMASVILLE — The suspect in a bizarre case told police a crack cocaine habit fueled his criminal activity.

The suspect, Morris Johnson Jr., 54, 208 W. Clay St., will be charged with four counts each of burglary and motor vehicle theft when he is transferred to Thomasville from the Brooks County Jail.

Johnson will be charged with taking four trucks from the City of Thomasville shop on Davenport Drive.

Three of the four times Johnson stole trucks from the shop, he used the vehicles to break into the same Dixie store on U.S. 84 in Brooks County, said Lt. Wade Glover, Thomasville Police Department (TPD) Criminal Investigations Division commander.

Johnson’s alleged activity came to an end midday Monday at the Dixie store. Earlier in the day, at 4:30 a.m., the suspect took a utility truck from the city shop, Glover said.

“It was a tree-trimming vehicle that belonged to a company the city contracts with,” the commander explained.

Johnson again drove the vehicle to Dixie and tried to gain entry to the store.

“He was confronted by the Brooks County Sheriff’s Office and fled from the scene in the vehicle,” Glover said.

A short pursuit ensued. Just outside Dixie, the truck traveled into a field. Johnson jumped out and fled into woods.

Brooks County officers, Georgia State Patrol troopers and the TPD canine unit set up a perimeter, with the GSP helicopter searching overhead.

Johnson was apprehended about 12:30 p.m. as he exited the wooded area. Glover said the suspect confessed to breaking into the store after hours and stealing merchandise — cigarettes, chewing tobacco and beer.

“He said he is familiar with the store and would stop and get food. He knew it was in an isolated area, and he could break in and get away,” the officer explained.

Johnson was also familiar with the city shop: He had been employed at the facility as a temporary employee for about a month.

“During the interview, he said he was supporting his drug habit — crack cocaine,” Glover said.

Senior reporter Patti Dozier an be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 1820.

 

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