Indianapolis man sentenced to 12 years in prison for auto theft

BEDFORD – On Wednesday, November 2, 2022, Lawrence County Superior Court I Judge John M. Plummer III sentenced Jerron Williams to 12 years in the Indiana Department of Corrections.

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Jerron Williams

Williams, 38, pleaded guilty to felony charges of auto theft and resisting law enforcement stemming from an incident that took place on November 15, 2021, near Judah. According to the probable cause affidavit, an elderly couple had stopped at the State Road 37 intersection to see if Williams needed help when the truck he was driving broke down. It was determined later that the white truck was reported stolen earlier in the day from Indianapolis.

The couple who had their Jeep stolen were from Greencastle and the female driver advised that Williams stepped in front of her moving vehicle and when she stopped he threatened to shoot her if she didn’t get out of the vehicle. She believed that Williams was holding what looked like a sawed-off shotgun. The female driver got out of the vehicle and attempted to get a wheelchair out of the back of the vehicle for her husband but was stopped by Williams. The female managed to get her husband out of the passenger seat without his wheelchair and Williams drove off. 

Williams then drove off before leading law enforcement on a prolonged high-speed chase.

Lawrence County Sheriff’s Deputy Anthony Pope responded to the area and caught up to the vehicle, activated lights, and sirens, and attempted to initiate a traffic stop. However, Williams refused to pull over. Just north of the Lawrence/Monroe County line the Jeep crossed the median and headed south on State Road 37, continuing through Lawrence and Orange counties, and briefly entering Crawford County.

Officers from Bedford and Mitchell Police Departments along with the Indiana State Police joined the pursuit, while others set up in front of the pursuit with spike strips in multiple locations. Williams managed to avoid spike strips several times, including one occasion when he swerved toward Lawrence County Deputy Whitney Daugherty who was deploying spike strips and had to run out of the way to avoid being hit. Eventually, spike strips were successfully deployed and all four tires were deflated, however, Williams continued driving on flat tires and eventually was operating the truck on just the rims. Due to the vehicle continuing, being unable to maintain control, and staying in its lane, Captain Andy Blackburn used a PIT maneuver, a pursuit tactic by which a pursuing car can force a fleeing car to turn sideways abruptly, causing the driver to lose control and stopped the vehicle south of Paoli.

Williams was taken into custody without further incident and transported to the Lawrence County Security Center. In William’s pocket officers found marijuana, meth, and one pill – Buprenorphine, a schedule three controlled substance. 

Deputy Prosecutor Ryne Koucouthakis

The State was represented in this case by Deputy Prosecutor Ryne Koucouthakis provided the following statement, “There have to be consequences for individuals who think they can come into this community and take advantage of the people here. What happened to these victims is simply unacceptable and high-speed pursuits like the one, in this case, put law enforcement and everyone else on or near the roadway in danger. Our office does not take either one of those things lightly and the sentence, in this case, represents that.”