A Graniteville man was detained on multiple charges Saturday, including driving under the influence and burglary after he led lawmen on a high-speed chase, wrecked his vehicle and entered a woman’s home to hide, according to the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office.
Brandon Johnson, 27, of Church Street, was charged with driving under the influence, driving under suspension, failure to stop for blue lights and sirens, second-degree burglary, leaving the scene of a collision and an open container violation. He was placed in the Aiken County detention center, where he remained on Monday afternoon.
The incident began about 6:30 p.m. Saturday when a sheriff’s deputy on patrol saw a black Chevrolet Impala behind a restaurant on Arbute Street, according to a sheriff’s report. The officer also saw “what appeared to be a drug transaction” taking place between two men inside the vehicle and a woman.
The woman saw the officer and fled, and the driver of the Impala began driving away at a “high rate of speed,” according to the report. The officer followed the vehicle, which continued driving at high speeds and activated his emergency lights and siren.
The officer lost sight of the Impala as it traveled on Gregg Street toward Kalmia Apartments, according to the report. Entering the area, he saw “vehicle parts” in the road and realized that the vehicle had entered Kalmia Apartments and wrecked.
As officers secured the wreck scene, a woman approached and told them a man had fled the wreck, entered her home without her permission and was hiding from law enforcement, according to the report. Officers were preparing to enter the home when Johnson exited and surrendered.
Johnson was immediately recognized by the officer as the man driving the vehicle he saw behind the restaurant earlier, according to the report. He’d reportedly struck a curb while driving the vehicle through Kalmia Apartments, damaging the entire passenger side.
Johnson has 14 other arrests on his record going back to 2002, including assault and battery, trafficking of cocaine, burglary and criminal domestic violence, according to the detention center website.
The wrecked Impala was later found to be a rental.
The report did not indicate what happened to the second man seen inside the vehicle before the chase.