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One man arrested, another treated for head injuries after ATV chase, crash

JENNA-LEY HARRISON
Staff Writer

A Lincolnton man was airlifted to an area hospital and another man arrested Thursday morning following a stolen ATV crash, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office said.

The incident took place east of Lincolnton, deputies said.

According to an agency press release, officers spotted the ATV with a vehicle following closely behind it just after 3 a.m. on Salem Church Road.

At the time, deputies were stationed in the parking lot of Hope Baptist Church, located along the roadway.

Upon approaching the suspicious-looking vehicle and 4-wheeler, deputies said the driver of the vehicle stopped for officers while the ATV continued fleeing the area, later running off the roadway near the intersection of Country Club Road.

Once the 4-wheeler came back onto the roadway, the release said, it struck one of the patrol vehicles before crashing into a nearby culvert.

The collision propelled the driver, Johnathan Heath Williams, 26, off the stolen vehicle, deputies said.

Emergency Medical Services airlifted the victim, a resident of Victor Woods Drive in Lincolnton, to Carolinas Medical Center-Main in Charlotte for treatment for head injuries, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputies arrested James Allen Harris, the driver of the second vehicle, at a location on Generals Boulevard.

The 50-year-old man, who lives on Underwood Lane, also in Lincolnton, was charged with carrying a concealed weapon, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving while license revoked or suspended, possession of a schedule IV controlled substance and various other traffic violations.

Harris is currently being held in the county jail under a $5,000 secured bond.

The owner of the ATV, David Queen, of 2659 Keener Road in Lincolnton, told deputies his 4-wheeler was taken from his garage overnight. He reported it stolen just before 9 a.m. today, the release said.

Troopers with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol are conducting an ongoing investigation into the incident.

According to the North Carolina Deparment of Correction website, Harris maintains numerous offenses on his record dating back to 1985 in Lincoln, Catawba and Gaston Counties.

Convictions include more than one instance of DWI along with assault on a female, larceny, damage to property and resisting an officer, among others.

Williams has a drug-related offense to his name from Burke County in addition to a Lincoln County conviction for illegally taking a deer, the site showed.

Charges against Williams are currently pending, the Sheriff’s Office said.

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