DUNLAP, Tenn. – A Sequatchie County manhunt continues and a plea for a suspect who allegedly wrecked a car, with a child in his lap and took off, to turn himself in is made.
Authorities say 30-year-old Jonathan Farley was driving the wrong way on Highway 111 on Cagle Mountain, and when authorities tried stopping the GMC Jimmy that was going north in the southbound lane with a toddler on driver Jonathan Farley’s lap, he did not stop.
According to Sequatchie County Sheriff Ronnie Hitchcock, “A deputy turned around trying to get him off the road, he left the roadway, went up into a driveway, a long driveway to a house and proceeded into the yard and ran into a wooded area and hit a tree with his vehicle.”
Part of that tree still in the grill, but Hitchcock says then he took off running through the woods with his toddler son in tow to the home his grandmother says he shares with his other grandmother.
Farley’s grandmother, Charlotte Farley, says “he left the baby with his Granny Brenda which he lives with and she loves him and takes good care of him and he loves that child.”
The baby was ok with the exception of some scratches, but Farley ran into the woods. Deputies searched with dogs into the night.
Sheriff Hitchcock said the K-9s followed Farley’s scent through the woods but then lost it when they got around Highway 399. He figures someone picked him up, and took him somewhere to hideout.
His family and Sheriff Hitchcock are asking him to turn himself in.
“If he comes in on his own, it’ll weigh heavy on the court,” Sheriff Hitchcock said.
Meanwhile deputies are scouring the county by car. They know his face pretty well. He’s been arrested several times before for evading, three DUI’s, assaults and disorderly conduct. Now, he’ll face felonies, evading and reckless child endangerment.
His grandmother thinks he was likely scared to face the cops because he had a couple ounces of whiskey in his car.
“I’m not denying Jonathan’s wrongdoing not having that baby in that car seat and then running. He should’ve just pulled over and took his medicine what they gave him,” Charlotte Farley said.
Still, she says deputies are making too big a deal out of it and says despite his mistakes, Farley is a good dad.
If you know where Farley may be, call the Sequatchie County Sheriff’s Office.
Information from: WRCB-TV