Jasper Co. SC - Suspect Steals Jasper Co. Sheriff's CHARGER Patrol Car - 150 MPH CHASE Through School Zone



April 18th, 2007

From dash cam video of Turnbow's arrest.


A man is behind bars tonight after he took a police on a wild chase from South Carolina to Port Wentworth. Police say James Turnbow stole two cars, one a Jasper County patrol car. Turnbow led police on a 40-mile chase and it didn't end until 15 different police agencies teamed up to catch him.

Port Wentworth captain Matt Libby says Turnbow stole a car from Coastal Roofing Company, then headed north on I-95.

"Five to ten minutes later, Jasper County police stopped a pickup for speeding; the driver gave false information and he was detained and we told him that he was a suspect in a burglary," said Capt. Libby.

Police say Turnbow moved his handcuffs around to the front, hopped in the front of the patrol car and took off.

Curtis Gay was driving on Jimmy Deloach when he saw Turnbow fly by.

"I just though he was a patrol car and part of that Rolling Thunder thing, and then I thought, 'Wait a minute, that's Jasper County, he shouldn't be in Georgia,'" said Gay.

Police say Turnbow was going over 150 miles per hour during the chase and to top it all off, he went through two school zones--Effingham County High and Middle Schools--going over 100 miles per hour.

"He had his blue lights on, running cars off the road and had a total disregard for officers, motorists, as well as himself," said Capt. Libby.

It was a dangerous situation that lasted 15 minutes before police finally cornered Turnbow in a field off Highway 30.

"He pulled in the back and tried to hide in the woods and turned off the blue lights, but there are a lot of switches in a patrol car and he couldn't figure out how to turn off the wigwags on the front of the car," said Libby, referring to the blinking lights many patrol cars carry. Officers spotted the lights in the woods and soon made their bust.

"That Charger is excellent on the road and highways, interstates, but doesn't work too well in the cornfield," Capt. Libby told us.

And it was that mistake that ended the chase and landed Turnbow behind bars.

"He wasn't going to stop till he was caught," said Libby.

Turnbow is in the Chatham County jail facing several charges, including burglary and stealing a police car.