Coweta Judicial Circuit District Attorney Herb Cranford says Deputy Chris Thompson will not be charged in connection with the death of a man during a high-speed chase and crash on August 13, 2020.
Twenty-nine-year-old Rafael Jevon Minniefield died at the scene after Thompson executed a PIT maneuver on his truck.
On the evening in question, a Newnan police officer reportedly saw Minniefield driving a 2002 Dodge Ram and hitting and driving against the curb along Greenville Street for about 50 to 60 yards.
The officer stopped the vehicle near the Corinth Road junction but was unable to make contact before Minniefield allegedly turned on his headlights and fled.
Thompson was going to back-up the officer when he saw the truck take off. He began a pursuit along Highway 29 towards Moreland.
Video footage showed Minniefield running a red light, weaving into traffic, and hitting speeds of over 100 mph with his headlights off.
As the chase got close to a residential section of Moreland, Thompson went into the oncoming lane and performed a PIT maneuver, according to Cranford.
Minniefield’s truck overturned and hit an electricity pole and multiple trees before it stopped.
The driver was ejected from the vehicle and he died on his way to the hospital after sustaining multiple serious injuries.
The authorities said he may have been impaired and his driver’s license had been suspended. They don’t believe he was wearing a seatbelt.
Cranford said Minniefield was out on probation for two prior convictions. He was also reportedly facing new charges relating to incidents prior to the crash.
The DA said Thompson was allowed to use deadly force since Minniefield was a suspected felon using a car as an offensive weapon that was likely to cause serious bodily injury.
However, the victim’s mother Tanaka Jones said Thompson’s use of force was unnecessary.
If you lost a loved one in a crash, a Georgia car accident attorney may be able to help you get compensation.