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A Gaston Police officer tried to stop Joseph Drafts, 42, of West Columbia, for speeding and for a license tag violation. However, Drafts refused to stop for blue lights and led the officer on a 10-mile chase outside of city limits, according to Maj. Stephen Watkins. Lexington County Sheriff’s deputies were asked to assist by placing stop sticks along Highway 6. Drafts’s front passenger tire was punctured, but he was able to drive a little way before the tire fell completely off and his vehicle wrecked into a pine tree on Avon Court in Gaston.
Watkins said Drafts then fled the vehicle on foot and traveled through the woods to Sems Road. While officers were using K-9s to track Drafts, Lexington County deputies got dispatched to a home on Sems Road regarding a suspicious person in a resident’s yard. When deputies arrived, the homeowner had Drafts at gunpoint, unaware that he was currently being chased by police. Drafts was then arrested and taken into custody.
Drafts is charged with driving under suspension fourth offense, failure to stop for blue lights and breach of trust motor vehicle. Watkins said the breach of trust motor vehicle charge is a warrant out of West Columbia and unrelated to Thursday’s incident. Other charges are expected as officers investigate. Also in the vehicle with Drafts was passenger Heirbrane Foster, 24. Foster did not flee the vehicle after it crashed and was taken into custody. Charges against Foster are pending. Both men were booked at the Lexington County Detention Center.
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