Aulander Police Chief assaulted

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 2, 2004

AULANDER – An Ahoskie man, Danyashi Wood, is wanted for assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer following an altercation here late Monday that nearly left the town without a police chief.

Aulander Police Chief Jimmy Barmer was injured while attempting to question a suspect near a convenience store, after the suspect drove off, dragging the police chief along side the vehicle for several yards.

&uot;We received an anonymous phone call that a suspect would be coming into Aulander driving a dark colored Honda Accord, and that the suspect would be transporting illegal drugs,&uot; Barmer stated.

Once the call had been passed along to Bertie County dispatchers, Agent K. Gilliam of the Bertie Narcotics Unit set up surveillance along Main Street and Commerce Street in the town.

A vehicle fitting the description was spotted shortly after the watch was posted and Chief Barmer was radioed that the vehicle was in the process of being parked in the parking lot of the convenience store.

&uot;I pulled up behind the suspect’s vehicle,&uot; Barmer stated. &uot;As I approached him, he jumped back in his car and tried to start the car, which was already started.

&uot;I reached in to turn the vehicle off and the suspect threw the car in drive and took off toward the Commerce Center, dragging me along side of the car,&uot; he continued.

Chief Barmer was able to free himself from the car as it sped into the parking lot of the Commerce Center and quickly regained footing to see the suspect wreck behind the building as his vehicle struck the rear of the store and then an abandoned van.

&uot;He jumped out of his car and a short foot pursuit took place by me. I was able to apprehend the suspect and a tussle broke out, and as we fell to the ground I hit the side of another parked vehicle, jamming my hand.

&uot;By this time, Agent Gilliam was able to apprehend the suspect and get him handcuffed and detained,&uot; Barmer said.

&uot;Once the suspect, Wood, was controlled, we began to question him about his intentions to flee and he admitted to us that he had narcotics and that he had swallowed approximately a quarter of an ounce of cocaine,&uot; Barmer said.

&uot;Out attention changed immediately to his safety,&uot; Barmer continued. &uot;We went from making an arrest to getting a rescue process underway.&uot;

Back up units had been called by this point, and now rescue was being paged in an effort to get Wood medical attention.

&uot;Right after he told us he had swallowed the cocaine, he acted as if he was non-responsive,&uot; Barmer said. &uot;This led us to believe he was in serious danger of death.&uot;

Rescue units were quick to the scene and Wood was escorted to Roanoke-Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie by Deputy S. White of the Bertie County Sheriff’s Office.

&uot;Once they arrived at the hospital, doctors removed Wood’s shirt and were getting ready to hook up the leads to the heart monitor, he jumped up and took off running. He exited the hospital through the front doors and ran across Academy Street and into a wooded area,&uot; Barmer said.

&uot;We already had the Martin County K-9 (Canine) Unit on the way to Aulander to search Wood’s vehicle, so we rerouted them to Ahoskie.

&uot;They picked up the scent,&uot; Barmer continued. &uot;But the dog lost it shortly thereafter.&uot;

The suspect, Danyashi Wood, 24, of Mitchell Street, Ahoskie, remains on the loose and is believed to still be in the area.

&uot;We are asking anyone who has information on the whereabouts on this person to contact their local law enforcement agency immediately,&uot; Barmer said.

Barmer acknowledged the assistance of the Bertie County Sheriff’s Department and the North Carolina Highway Patrol.

The police chief was treated for minor leg and arm injuries at Roanoke-Chowan Hospital and was released.

In addition to warrants for the assault, Woods is also wanted for resist, destruct and delay.

Anyone with information an contact the Aulander Police at 252-345-3181, the Bertie County Sheriff’s Office at 252-794-5330 or their local law enforcement agency.