A Columbus man who was riding in stolen 2011 RDX Acura before it crashed into a Georgia State Patrol cruiser and gunfire erupted pleaded not guilty Thursday to felony theft by taking motor vehicle.
Recorders Court Judge Mary Buckner ordered Dvante Pollard held on $30,000 bond on the theft and bound the charge over to Muscogee Superior Court.
Pollard, 21, was a passenger in the gray SUV driven by Alexander Streeter, 20, when the vehicle was stopped Nov. 15 in southwest Atlanta by a trooper after a check revealed that it had been stolen Nov. 12 from the parking lot of the Foxy Lady, a Columbus strip club on Victory Drive. Police Detective Bill Tuning said Pollard was arrested, but a shootout occurred between Streeter and the trooper. Streeter was shot and treated at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta. On the same day, Streeter had been named as one of five suspects in a burglary ring.
Tuning told the court that Ssang Johnson, the mother of a deployed soldier, was leaving the 3023 Victory Drive club in the SUV when she pulled off and felt something beneath the vehicle. As she stopped and stepped from the vehicle, a car with two men pulled up to her and one jumped from the vehicle.
As the man attempted to take the vehicle, the woman tried the stop him when he stepped from the SUV and struck her several times in the face. Johnson didnt get a description of the vehicle that drove near her in the dark parking lot. Someone had placed a traffic cone beneath her sons vehicle before the car appeared in the parking lot.
Pollard was asked by public defender Charles Lykins what he knew about the theft of the SUV, but Pollard just shook his head.
Tuning said the investigation into the shooting in Atlanta continues by the Georgia State Patrol. Pollard was returned to Columbus on Tuesday.
In the Atlanta shooting, the Georgia State Patrol said the Acura was stopped on Ga. Highway 166 near Barge Road.
A trooper said the Acura fled and turned onto Barge and Mellwood avenue before taking a left on Susan Lane, a cul-de-sac.
The trooper attempted to block the vehicle in the cul-de-sac when the fleeing SUV struck the troopers vehicle head-on.
The trooper tried to take one occupant to the ground after he climbed out of the passengers window. While struggling to get the suspect to the ground, the trooper said the man pulled a revolver from his waistband. The trooper pulled his service pistol and shot the suspect, striking him.
A week ago, Streeter was named among five men sought in connection with a suspected burglary ring. The other four included Chris Gilliam, 25, Delmorris Boyd, 26, Wayman McMillian, 18, and Jakeith Robinson, 19. All except Streeter are still being sought.
Police already have charged Emmanuel Williams, 18, Rickey Henderson, 19, Jacobee Matthews, 20, Demon Moore, 20, and Laquinton Robinson, 22, in connection with 26 burglaries in east and north Columbus.
They were arrested Nov. 6 at the Veterans Parkway Econo Lodge after being accused of entering a David Court home and taking a TV, computer, jewelry and 2010 Nissan Maxima.