Crime story

Coffee County Sheriff’s Department investigators apprehended suspects after a high-speed pursuit and with the help of a bystander who “found the subjects on his property and held them at gunpoint till officers could get there and place them into custody.”

On Monday Feb. 1, Coffee County Sheriff’s Department was contacted about mail fraud.

“We got a call from the postmaster of the post office. I’ve been working with him in regards to mail fraud,” said Investigator James Sherrill.

On Wednesday, the postmaster called and advised the subject was in the lobby of the post office.

“I called Investigator Gullet to go there and speak with this gentleman,” Sherrill said. “When he got there, he placed that gentlemen into custody. When he walked out with him the people in the cars saw Investigator Gullet with him, so they took off. At that point, myself and Investigator Brandon Reed pulled up and saw them take off. So we attempted to stop them, and as we attempted to stop them, they sideswiped my pickup truck while I had my lights and sirens going. When they sideswiped my pickup truck, they rear-ended another car, and pushed that car off the roadway.”

At that time, a pursued ensued.

“We chased them all the way into Warren County, driving at speeds over 100 mph,” Sherrill said.

“Warren County law enforcement tried to deploy stop sticks and when they saw the stop sticks, they threw two guns out of the car. So we recovered the guns. They hit the off-ramp on the opposite side of the roadway and that’s when we lost sight of them.

The vehicle was found shortly after on Bridge Builders Road in McMinnville, not far from where the investigators lost sight of the suspect, according to the report.

“It appeared the vehicle incapacitated,” according to the report. “All occupants of the vehicle had fled on foot. A tracking dog was deployed in an attempt to locate.”

Investigator Gullet arrived on scene and began inventorying the vehicle.

“A short time later, a bystander found the subjects on his property and held them at gunpoint till officers could get there and place them into custody,” Sherrill said. “Subjects consisted of driver, Jeffery Dews, Jada Springs, and Jeffery’s cousin, Armond Dews.

“Jeffery admitted that he knew what they had come to Manchester to do, and that was to commit mail fraud. Jeffery advised when they observed Investigator Gullett come out of the post office with Tawon, they knew they had to get out of there. Jeffery said he was not going to get caught at any cost. Armond said that he paid Tawon to change the address of Ronnie Meeker. In the car Investigator Gullett found numerous credit cards and credit card numbers which is consistent with people involved in mail fraud schemes.

“Jeffery Dews was charged with 3 counts of aggravated assault, evading arrest, leaving the scene of an accident, driving on suspended driver’s license, and unlawful possession of weapon by felon. Investigator Gullet charged Armond Dews and Tawon Billups with several charges. Jada Springs was released without charges,” according to the report.