BY MELANIE BUCK –
Polk County Sheriff’s Deputies began their Monday morning with a high-speed pursuit of a person who fired shots into the air at two convenience stores in South Polk County on January 30, 2017. At approximately 6:30 a.m., Polk County Dispatch advised deputies of a report from TJ’s Convenience Store in Hatfield of a subject that had pumped fuel and failed to pay. Dispatch advised the subject left that location, but returned a short time later, pulled into the parking lot, and discharged a firearm from the window of his vehicle into the air. The subject’s vehicle was described as a black Ford F150 four-door truck.
Deputies made contact with the witnesses at TJ’s and were able to determine the identity of the subject as Greg Allen Cunningham. While at TJ’s, deputies learned that after Cunningham initially left that location, he had traveled to Scotty’s in Cove, discharged a firearm into the air while in their parking lot, and then returned to TJ’s in Hatfield.
While deputies were patrolling the area, they were able to locate Cunningham, who was traveling east on Highway 246 towards Hatfield, in the vehicle described by witnesses. Deputies attempted to stop Cunningham, to which he did not respond. A vehicle pursuit started at the intersection of Polk 38 and Highway 246W near Hatfield. While in pursuit of the vehicle, Stop Sticks were deployed by Arkansas State Police to disable the vehicle, but Cunningham was able to avoid them. The pursuit continued north on Highway 71 from Hatfield, with Cunningham traveling at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour.
Arkansas State Police were again able to deploy Stop Sticks and disabled two tires on the subject’s vehicle. After striking the stop sticks, the pursuit continued approximately two miles before Cunningham stopped his vehicle in the middle of Highway 71 just south of Iron Mountain. Cunningham refused to follow commands issued by the deputies, and after a short standoff, the subject was removed from the vehicle and placed safely into custody.
Officers on the scene searched Cunningham’s vehicle with the department’s new narcotics K-9, Otto, as well as conducting a hand search. It is unclear at this time what items of interest may have been found.
Cunningham is currently detained in the Polk County Detention Center awaiting formal charges. Possible charges, pending the investigation, could include with theft of motor fuel, felony fleeing, and aggravated assault.
The Pulse will continue to update the story as more information becomes available.