One man was injured and another died later in a Georgia hospital Wednesday after the stolen car they were in crashed south of Piedmont during a police chase, officials said.
Cleburne County sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle at a Dollar General in Fruithurst around 12:33 p.m., State Trooper Cpl. Jimmy Harrell said. The driver of the 2017 Nissan Altima refused to pull over and deputies began chasing it, the corporal said.
The Nissan, carrying two men, fled down U.S. 78 and then turned onto Alabama 9 north toward Piedmont, Harrell said.
“Piedmont police stretched a spike strip across the northbound lane and you can see where they swerved to avoid it,” Harrell said, pointing to tire marks snaking across the roadway.
After the car swerved to avoid the spikes, it ran off the road into a row of trees along the southbound lane of the highway about 4 miles south of Piedmont.
Piedmont Rescue and EMS arrived to cut the two men out of the vehicle and take them to a landing zone for helicopters, Harrell said. Both men were flown to WellStar Kennestone Regional Medical Center in Marietta in critical condition, the corporal said.
Harrell said the vehicle had a Georgia license plate but was registered as a rental vehicle from the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport in Michigan.
The driver, identified as 21-year-old Chauncy Conway, of Detroit, was in stable condition with a broken leg about four hours after the wreck, the corporal said.
The passenger, identified as 19-year-old Moses McElroy III, of Oak Park, Mich., later died after undergoing surgery for his injuries, Harrell said Wednesday evening.
“We’re still working to identify the passenger,” he said. “He’s still in surgery in critical condition.”
Conway did not have any existing arrest warrants prior to the wreck, Harrell said.
“I’m sure Cleburne County will file something related to the chase and wreck,” he said.
Two hours after the wreck, the highway was blocked in both directions as state troopers highlighted tire marks with orange spray paint and took photographs of the wreckage. The vehicle, largely unrecognizable, was on its side resting against a tree.
The Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene to provide assistance, Harrell said.
According to the trooper, the wreck is still under investigation.