M’boro man faces Va. charges

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 28, 2008

FRANKLIN, Va. – A violent domestic dispute between a man and his girlfriend played itself out in the streets of Franklin on Tuesday, finally winding up in the parking lot of the city’s police department.

A Murfreesboro man is in jail without bond, accused in a chain of events that culminated in his ramming a police car with his 2004 Nissan Maxima while attempting to escape from the department’s parking lot, according to Lt. T.W. Whitt, a police spokesman.

Eric L. Mann, 31, of Story Road in Murfreesboro, was charged after the fracas with felony hit and run, four counts of attempted malicious wounding, felony destruction of property, three counts of assault and battery, petit larceny, reckless driving and driving with a suspended license.

Police reported that Mann began pursuing his girlfriend through the streets of Franklin at about 9:45 a.m. Tuesday. He was driving the Maxima, and she was in her own vehicle, along with her mother and a male friend. According to Whitt, the victims were trying to get away from Mann after he had threatened them.

According to Whitt, as Mann chased the others through several city streets, he crashed his car into the other in an attempt to run them off the road.

The chase ended when the victims drove into the police parking lot. As they tried to get into the police department’s lobby, Whitt said, Mann attacked them, causing the girlfriend’s mother to suffer a head injury that eventually sent her to the hospital.

Mann reportedly jumped back into his car as a marked police car entered the parking lot. The suspect is accused of putting his car in reverse and accelerating rapidly in an attempt to escape.

The resulting crash with the police car caused minor injuries to the two officers inside, Whitt said.

(R.E. Spears III is a Staff Writer with the Tidewater News in Franklin, Va., a sister publication of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald.)