A Graysville man is behind bars and facing a variety of drug-related charges after leading Rhea County Sheriff’s Department deputies on a multi-county police chase Thursday evening, according to reports.
Michael Gross, 22, of Graysville, is facing multiple charges, including reckless endangerment and possession of methamphetamine for resale, as well as evading arrest by motor vehicle after the chase that began in Rhea County at around 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13.
Rhea County Sheriff’s Deputy Jesse Wilkey said he was on patrol in the area of Black Oak Ridge Road on Thursday when a green Honda nearly struck his patrol vehicle.
“I turned around an activated my emergency lights and sirens and attempted to stop the vehicle,” Wilkey said. “Mr. Gross then accelerated the vehicle to approximately 70 miles per hour in a 30 mile per hour zone.”
Wilkey said he noticed two other occupants in the vehicle as he began the pursuit that eventually crossed into Hamilton County and then Bledsoe County. During the chase, deputies said they noticed the occupants of the vehicle also throwing out what was later identified as drug paraphernalia.
While the chase extended into Bledsoe County, Wilkey said that Gross eventually left the road and drove through a yard near a home and near a swing set.
“Due to Mr. Gross’ aggressive and reckless actions, myself and deputy Gravitt forced the vehicle off of the roadway and into a ditch,” Wilkey said.
Deputies held the vehicle at gunpoint once the vehicle came to a stop, according to reports, and Wilkey then attempted to place Gross under arrest.
“After several verbal commands with no response, I opened the driver’s door and again ordered Mr. Gross and other occupants out of the vehicle,” Wilkey said. “Mr. Gross continued to not respond and stiffened his arms and grabbed a hold of the steering wheel.”
Wilkey said he tried to remove Gross from the vehicle, but Gross resisted. Eventually, deputies were able to place Gross under arrest and remove the two other occupants of the vehicle as well.
According to Gross’ arrest report, deputies found 3.5 grams of methamphetamine in the vehicle and also found an additional 40 grams of methamphetamine upon search of the suspects. The two other occupants of the vehicle could be facing charges as well, according to reports.
Gross was charged with, possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting arrest, reckless driving, criminal littering, evading arrest, reckless endangerment, aggravated assault and possession of a Schedule II substance for resale.
According to jail records, Gross’ bond was set at $80,000, and he was still incarcerated as of press time Tuesday.