Comer police: Man throws drugs during pursuit, crashes into cop car

A Carlton man led law enforcement officers on a pursuit across several miles on Tuesday before crashing his car into a pursuing police cruiser.


Comer police said the suspect was throwing packets of drugs out of his car during the chase, which began inside the city of Comer and ended on Paoli Road on the outskirts of Carlton.

Preston Dean Lunsford, 25, was charged with attempting to elude, possession of methamphetamine and cocaine with intent to distribute, tampering with evidence and numerous traffic violations, including reckless driving, driving with a suspended license, DUI and damaging government property.

Police reported that the chase began about 2:20 p.m. on Gholston Street, proceeded up Highway 172 to Holly Creek Church Road, then to Paoli Road, where his 2006 Honda Accord skidded off the road after intentionally hitting a patrol vehicle.

The chase began after an officer on patrol in Comer saw Lunsford drive by and it appeared he wasn’t wearing a seat belt. The officer ran the license plate and it showed the car was not insured, according to the police report.

When the officer attempted a traffic stop, the car sped off reaching a speed of 75 mph in a 35 mph zone, police said. At one point as the man fled, police said he put his hand out the window and gave a “thumbs up” signal.

Police said that as Lunsford continued to flee, he was tossing bags out the window. The bags were later retrieved and found to contain cocaine and meth, officers said.

The chase came to an end when the car slowed to turn into a private driveway and he collided with the officer’s car, according to the report. Lunsford complied with demands to show his hands and he was placed in custody.

Lunsford, who was wanted on two outstanding warrants from Madison and Oglethorpe counties, remained in jail Wednesday without bond.