Suspect goes on accident spree

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Dwight Ray Braswell

Dwight Ray Braswell

Last week, a series of vehicle accidents led to the pursuit and arrest of an Ocean Springs man by the Pearl River County Sheriff’s and Picayune Police departments.
On Feb. 13 at 3:22 p.m., Picayune Police officers were dispatched to Interstate-59 North near exit 1 in reference to a reckless driver, Picayune Police Department Assistant Chief Jeremy Magri said.
The driver of the 2006 silver Nissan Frontier, later identified as Dwight Ray Braswell, 39, of 3907 Braswell Lane, Ocean Springs, evaded police until he was stopped just north of the Lamar County line, Pearl River County Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said.
Investigation into the incident alleges Braswell was traveling north on the interstate when he struck the first vehicle near exit one, at which time he took exit four onto Highway 43 South toward Walmart, made a U-turn, continued toward Memorial Boulevard, made a second U-turn and got back on the north-bound lane of the interstate, Magri said.
Braswell allegedly struck seven vehicles during that series of maneuvers, resulting in minor to heavy damage to the vehicles, some of which he struck multiple times, Magri said.
At one point, Braswell allegedly exited his vehicle and entered into a physical altercation with a witness, striking him in the head, before getting back into his car, and continuing to drive, Magri said.
The investigation shows that Brawell may have purposely struck those vehicles, Magri said.
Officers with the Picayune Police Department alerted surrounding agencies of the incident and that they should be on the lookout for Braswell, Magri said.
Pearl River County Sheriff’s deputies spotted the vehicle near mile marker 37 on the interstate, Tucker said.
Deputies and Mississippi Highway Patrol troopers then joined the pursuit that led into Lamar County, at which time troopers laid down spike strips in an attempt to stop the vehicle, Tucker said.
Braswell entered a ditch on the right side of the interstate in an attempt to avoid the strips, and came to a stop, Tucker said.
Braswell was unharmed and arrested by the sheriff’s department for resisting arrest by fleeing, failure to yield to emergency vehicles, speeding on a state highway, reckless driving, no seatbelt, driving in more than one lane, driving under the influence of substance other than alcohol, two counts of improper equipment, no insurance, improper lane passing, interference with traffic control devices, failure to maintain proper distance between vehicles and failure to comply, arrest records state.
Braswell made bond on those charges last week and was transferred to the Picayune Police Department where he was charged with seven counts of aggravated assault, seven counts of leaving the scene of an accident, seven counts of reckless driving and one count of simple assault, Magri said.
Braswell posted a $70,500 bond for those charges on Friday, Magri said.
According to a news release issued by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department on Feb. 14, Braswell was arrested and charged with simple assault on a police officer and failure to yield to blue lights and sirens on Highway 57 in Vancleave.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

About Julia Arenstam

Staff Writer

email author More by Julia