Public records show a concerning response to a reported reckless driver in the City of Guyton.
It began with a call from an off-duty Effingham County Sheriff’s deputy. The concerned deputy contacted Effingham 911 to report the driver, noting he believed the driver may be intoxicated and requested that Guyton PD be notified. Though the off-duty deputy gave officers ample time to prepare, officers never left the roundabout in the heart of Guyton and the driver took out a yield sign and ramped up over the curb into a crowded parking lot before coming to a stop – only after the deputy boxed the individual in with his personal vehicle as Guyton PD arrived.
The collision with fixed objects and the jut into a busy grocery store parking lot were caught on dash camera while the rest of the story was put together with Open Records Requests from the city and Effingham 911.
A VIDEO TIMELINE OF WHAT HAPPENED
The video includes a compilation of audio recordings from the reporting off-duty deputy, from dispatch, and from Guyton PD officers.
Just after 4:00 p.m. on Friday, April 29, 2022, the off-duty deputy contacted Effingham 911 to report a possible drunk driver. The off-duty deputy followed the driver for upwards of six miles, contacting first the Sheriff’s Office and, upon learning no one was in the immediate area, requested assistance from Guyton Police Officers.
The deputy offered multiple locations, a vehicle description, a tag number, and a number of driving behaviors that contributed to his call for law enforcement intervention. He reported the possible drunk driver was:
1. Failing to maintain his lane
3. Following too closely, almost rear-ending two vehicles
4. Going into oncoming traffic on the other side of the road multiple times
5. Coming to a complete stop in the middle of the road
6. responsible for taking out a stop sign in the roundabout
But as they approached the city limits, no Guyton Officer made an effort to drive toward the suspected impaired driver to intercept the vehicle. That’s not where the gaps in the chain of events stopped, however.
NO JAIL BOOKING
The booking desk website for the Effingham County Jail showed no inmate was booked into the jail due to an infraction by Guyton PD on April 29, 2022.
RECORDS REQUEST FOR CITATIONS ISSUED ON APRIL 2022
The lack of jail booking prompted an ORR for citations issued on April 29, 2022.
The city provided the following document, indicating that no male driver was cited for any infractions: (TGV redacted the names of the individuals cited as their alleged offenses are not relevant to this story)
This document contradicts the radio traffic of Guyton PD and the CAD report, in which Officer B. Johnson stated he issued two citations to the driver.