Police: Bayou George man rammed police car during chase

SPRINGFIELD, Fla. - A Bayou George man is facing up to ten charges and ten traffic citations after allegedly leading Springfield Police on a chase through Bay County.

Donald Lee Townsend, 41, was involved in a drugs transaction in the parking lot of a business near 15th Street and Transmitter Road, officers wrote in a media release. As police tried to confront Townsend, they said he drove off in a grey Dodge mini van.

Officers followed Townsend to the intersection of 15th Street and Sherman Avenue, where Townsend allegedly rammed an officer's patrol vehicle. Chief Philip Thorne said the vehicle had to be towed, but the officer wasn't injured.

Other officers continued to chase Townsend through Panama City, across the Hathaway bridge, and into Panama City Beach. Multiple agencies also joined the pursuit and attempted to stop the vehicle with spike strips.

Thorne said Townsend eventually stopped near Back Beach Road and Cauley Avenue.

Townsend, who police said is a fugitive, was arrested on charges of Fleeing and Eluding Police, Aggravated Assault on Law Enforcement, and Failure to Appear for Sale of Marijuana.

Springfield Police are still formulating charges, which include Felony Driving While License Suspended, Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding, Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Felon in Possession of Ammunition, Aggravated Battery on Law Enforcement Officer, Solicitation to Sell a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Sell, and Possession of Paraphernalia.

Florida Highway Patrol has issued numerous citations for Townsend's driving actions during this incident.

Townsend was taken to the Bay County Jail to await First Appearance before a judge.


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