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Bibb Deputies Jump in Pond to Catch Runaway Suspect | Crime

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Bibb Deputies Jump in Pond to Catch Runaway Suspect

One off-duty Bibb County deputy went from getting his tire changed to wading in a north Macon pond to catch a fleeing suspect.

That's according to a news release from the Bibb County Sheriff's Office.

On top of that, Deputy Clay Williams was dressed in full honor guard attire having just come from a Monday ceremony with Governor Nathan Deal to pay tribute to a Bibb deputy who'd been killed in the line of duty in 1918.

Williams joined in the foot chase for a runaway suspect when he saw fellow Bibb deputy, Justin Leese, in pursuit from the Amstar Theater parking lot through the Wendy's parking lot and across Zebulon Road.

The chase started when deputies were called to the movie theater because customers reported a pair of panhandlers. Deputies approached the suspects -- one male and one female -- and the male gave his name as Eddie Pope.

As they checked out that name, the male suspect pushed the female between himself and the deputies then took off on foot.

When Williams joined the chase, the suspect -- later identified as 32-year-old Joseph Timothy Poke -- jumped over a fence and into a retention pond near the Kohl's. 

Poke, of Tifton, was arrested and charged with panhandling, giving false information and obstruction. Deputies also found an outstanding Superior Court warrant for Poke, which kept him from making bond.

According to the news release, no one was injured during the incident.

Earlier in the day, Williams was the escort for the grandson of Franklin Leland Williams, a Bibb deputy killed in the line of duty in 1918.


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