HUNTSVILLE — A pursuit of an off-road vehicle here Saturday afternoon ended in a crash and the arrest of its driver — one of a pair of arrests involving accidents related to the Brimstone Paragon event, which was an otherwise smooth event, according to authorities.
Cory M. Phillips, 27, of Huntsville, was arrested after leading a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper on a pursuit along Baker Highway. The pursuit ended when Phillips crashed his Yamaha side-by-side, which landed on its side in a deep ditch off Huntsville Industrial Plant Road, near the Great Dane Trailers plant.
Fortunately, both Phillips and his passenger — identified by warrants as a seven-year-old boy — were uninjured in the crash. However, Phillips was immediately arrested.
Affidavits filed by THP Trooper Isaiah Lloyd did not specify why Lloyd was attempting to stop Phillips’ ATV. However, Phillips was driving without a helmet. While state law permits ATVs on the highway during the event weekend, helmet usage is required.
With Lloyd in pursuit along Baker Highway, Phillips attempted to elude the trooper by driving through yards and on the side of the highway. Lloyd wrote in the affidavits that Phillips “made eye contact” after Lloyd activated his emergency lights and siren, then sped up, “fleeing in a reckless manor.”
As the pursuit neared Industrial Drive, Lloyd was able to get in front of Phillips, which he wrote in the affidavits was an attempt to force the driver to slow down or stop. After attempting the maneuver multiple times, Lloyd wrote that Phillips struck his patrol vehicle with the side-by-side.
After the collision, which saw the front of Phillips’ ATV strike the side of Lloyd’s vehicle, the ATV veered from the roadway and crashed, landing on its side in a deep ravine.
As Phillips scrambled from the vehicle, he was confronted at gunpoint by Lloyd, just as Scott County Sheriff Ronnie Phillips and deputy sheriff Dusty Hayes were arriving on the scene to assist Lloyd in taking Phillips into custody without further incident.
A multitude of other THP troopers and sheriff’s deputies responded to the scene to provide backup.
Phillips was charged with aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, violation of the halt, stop, frisk law, and driving on a suspended license, fifth offense.
In a separate incident, a Carthage man — Bobby J. Bryant, 52 — was arrested later in the evening, after crashing his Jeep Cherokee on River Road in Huntsville.
According to an arrest warrant filed by Sheriff’s Department deputy Keith Hawkins, Bryant told authorities that he had consumed nine beers before flipping his Jeep. Two of his passengers were injured in the crash.
Bryant’s blood alcohol level was found to be 0.21 percent, well over Tennessee’s legal limit of 0.08 percent.
Bryant was charged with DUI.
Despite those two incidents, Sheriff Phillips said the weekend-long event — which drew thousands of guests to Scott County — went off without a hitch, making for a smooth weekend overall.
Phillips said that, as in year past, the THP assisted local law enforcement by using ATVs to patrol the River Road area south of Huntsville.