The checkpoint on Highway 411 toward Rome aimed its efforts at unsafe drivers. While working the checkpoint, deputies watched for wanted persons at the checkpoint. About 7:45 p.m., Kevin Lee Patterson, 34, of Rydal drove up and was immediately recognized by deputies as a fugitive with an outstanding probation violation warrant, according to Bartow County Sheriff Clark Millsap.
Millsap said deputies previously had attempted to arrest Patterson and he fled. At the checkpoint, Patterson was resistant to arrest, and after a struggle, he was tasered. He was arrested on the warrant and faces new charges for resisting arrest. Patterson received stitches at Cartersville Medical Center before being transferred to the Bartow County Jail. Two deputies were treated for injuries, including a bite, sustained during the struggle with Patterson.
Also arrested were two persons with Patterson: Anna Tinney, 32, of Cartersville and James Roy Patterson III, 43, of Cartersville. They were both charged with hindering apprehension of a criminal as they were present during the previous arrest attempt on Patterson and knew he was a fugitive, according to a BCSO release.
Thursday night's checkpoint followed the Mountain Area Traffic Enforcement Network II meeting of 92 officers representing various agencies at the Clarence Brown Conference Center in Cartersville. MATEN II, which covers 10 northwest Georgia counties including Bartow, is an effort of the Governor's Office of Highway Safety. There are currently 16 regional traffic enforcement networks servicing all 159 counties in Georgia.
"Driver's licenses, vehicles with valid insurance, safe vehicles, impaired drivers and unrestrained children are the target of road safety checks," BCSO Capt. Lee Fletcher said.
He said the BCSO averages two checkpoints per month and tries to focus efforts in areas of heavy traffic and where high numbers of wrecks and fatalities occur.
Sgt. Shawn Prather with the Dalton GSP post said joint agency checkpoints also serve another purpose in current economic conditions. "Gas is high. The state budget is going through a rough time. Not only does this save us money by not burning gas running up the road, it's also more productive. ... This is a very productive enforcement tool."
Mark Wesley with MCCD said his department was checking commercial vehicles Thursday night for impaired driving, vehicle defects such as brakes and tires, load securement and seat belt violations.
MCCD enforces three levels of inspection from a full check of the vehicle and driver safety to simply examining the driver, Wesley said. The agency may issue citations, make arrests, or suspend driver or vehicle service until violations are corrected.
Final numbers on citations issued and arrests made were not available at press time.