Charges pile on police chase suspects

by Wes Mayer

The man and woman who attempted to outrun Coweta County and Fayette County law enforcement officers Friday will soon be facing a large number of traffic charges.

The suspects, Shawntay Simmons, 26, and Michael Harvey, 32, were both arrested on charges of identity fraud and transported to the Fayette County Jail. The two are suspected of stealing mail from a resident’s mailbox in Tyrone, which began the chase. As of Tuesday, Simmons had bonded out of the Fayette County Jail, but Harvey was still being held on an $11,220 bail.

Around 10:15 a.m. Friday, Coweta County deputies were alerted of a high speed chase involving a white Chevrolet Tahoe and Fayette County law enforcement, said Lt. Col. Jimmy Yarbrough with the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies caught up with the suspects around the intersection of Bullsboro Drive and White Oak Drive, and the chase continued onto I-85 northbound.

Deputies chased the suspects on the interstate at speeds of more than 100 mph, and the suspects were driving erratically with disregard for other motorists on the highway, Yarbrough said. Near exit 51, Deputy Brandon Thrower performed a PIT — precision immobilization technique — maneuver, causing the Tahoe to veer off the road toward the shoulder.

The Tahoe wrecked after losing control, and the two suspects, who were not injured, were taken into custody.

According to Yarbrough, after Simmons and Harvey are finished serving time in Fayette County, they will be charged with numerous traffic violations in Coweta County — including fleeing and attempting to elude officers, reckless driving, failure to maintain lane, a stop light violation and more. There were a few instances where the suspects nearly caused an accident during the chase.

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