NWGA Scanner | May 12th, 2022

Rome man leads Floyd County officers on late night pursuit in dump truck after physical domestic in Armuchee

According to a Floyd County Police Department incident report, April 22nd, 2022, at 12:26 AM, Officer McMeekin responded to a physical domestic altercation in Armuchee. The caller advised it was between her ex-husband and their two sons. The officer arrived and spoke to the two sons, who both advised that John Randolph Weatherby, 43, of Rome, did not live there and that they had not talked to their father for the last four months. While talking to them both, the officer reported he observed dirt, scratches, and abrasions on both of them. They both refused to advise anything further to the officer. The officer took a report regarding the incident, and John left the scene in his dump truck. At 1:15 AM, Officer McMeekin was traveling behind a dump truck driven by John Randolph Weatherby on GA-1 north @ GA-140. Officer McMeekin reported, “While traveling southbound on Ga 1 north near Scenic Rd, I observed one of his rear taillights falling off the truck and dragging along the highway. At that point, [I] had reason to believe that OCGA 40-8-7, the vehicle was not being maintained in a good working condition, deeming the truck improperly equipped as well as being unsafe. [I] then activated my blue lights and audible siren in order to stop the truck to warn Weatherby and allow him the opportunity to fix the light. We continued to travel southbound on GA-1 north, maintaining the posted speed limit or less with minimal traffic. [I] then proceeded to drive to the side of the truck to ensure Weatherby had an opportunity to see the blue lights and hear the siren. Weatherby still failed to stop once realizing [I] was initializing a traffic stop on him. As [I] re-centered behind the vehicle, Officer Carranza drove past the truck and positioned himself a distance in front of the truck, not in an attempt to perform a rolling roadblock. However, to ensure and give Weatherby every opportunity to realize he needed to stop. Instead of stopping, Weatherby changed lanes and drove around Officer Carranza, and we continued southbound on GA-1 north, maintaining the posted speed or less and with minimal traffic still. As we approached Rome City and passed Three Mile Road, Sgt. Wade joined in the chase from the northbound direction, and Weatherby still did not stop.” The pursuit continued southbound toward Rome, passing Berry College still maintaining the speed limit or less and with minimal traffic. As the pursuit passed Berry college, other officers with marked units and emergency blue lights activated successfully deployed spike sticks in an a attempt to terminate the chase. Weatherby then turned onto North 5th Avenue and then onto Turner Mccall Blvd, still minimal traffic and maintaining posted speed. Officer McMeekin reported, “As we approached the red light at Turner Mccall and Broad Street, Weatherby stopped, and [I] pulled up beside him and advised him to stop and to get out of the vehicle. He began to yell back he was going to Bobby Loyd’s and proceeded through the red light and we continued to chase him. We then pulled into the parking lot of Loyd’s towing, where [I] proceeded to draw my issue service weapon and pointed it at Weatherby when he opened the door and stood on the top step of the dump truck. While myself and other officers had Weatherby at gun point we issued loud verbal commands for him to get out of the vehicle and to get on the ground (Felony Take Down). Weatherby continued to stand on the step not complying with the commands. [I] had told the other officers that he possessed a knife to be aware. As myself and Sgt. Wade got closer to Weatherby he sat back down in the truck willfully obstructing the lawful commands given to him. Not knowing his intentions and knowing he had a knife in his pocket from a domestic earlier, [I] along with Sgt. Wade grabbed his arm to gain control and guide him out of the truck. This was done in order to prevent him from arming himself with the knife or anything else potentially in the truck. While on the ground [I] was focusing on getting control of his arms in order to handcuff Weatherby. Weatherby resisted arrest by not following commands to give us his arms, so [I] began to pry and get his arms out from under his body. After a few seconds his left arm was controlled and so [I] continued to get his right arm in attempt to handcuff him but he kept it under his body near his pocket. Knowing he possessed a knife [I] then delivered 3-4 close hand strikes to his rib cage area in order to gain compliance. When Weatherby still refused to give his arm, [I] then placed my body over his arm and back area and reached my left arm through the crack of his arm and shoulder blade and used leverage to pick up his right side enough and took my right arm to grab his right arm and was successful.” Weatherby was taken into custody, where he was found in possession of two knives. Weatherby was transported to Floyd Hospital for treatment for injuries to his head and transported to Floyd County Jail, charged with fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, unregistered vehicle, operation of unregistered vehicle or vehicle without a current license plate, standards for brake lights and signal devices, open container violation, and failure to obey traffic-control devices.