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Hawkins man wanted for April high-speed chase nabbed during traffic stop

Jeff Bobo • Jul 19, 2018 at 5:30 PM

SURGOINSVILLE — A Hawkins County man who allegedly led the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office on a high-speed chase into Virginia before escaping on foot this past April was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop for a light law violation.

Deputy Chad Gillenwater, who initiated the traffic stop on Housewright Hollow Road Tuesday evening, identified Matthew Lee Thacker in the passenger seat as being wanted on several charges including felony evading arrest.

On April 19 Deputy Jason Montgomery was patrolling Carters Valley Road near the Thurman Road intersection when he reportedly observed a white Volkswagon speeding 71 mph in a 45 mph zone.

When Montgomery attempted to initiate a traffic stop, the driver of the Volkswagon, later identified as Thacker, allegedly accelerated to 90 mph.

Thacker, 37, 1685 Caney Valley Road, Surgoinsville, reportedly fled to Waterson Gap Road, crossed the center line to pass two vehicles, and blew the stop sign at the Stanley Valley Road intersection.

Thacker then continued east on Stanley Valley Road, crossed into Virginia, and then exited his vehicle and fled on foot. It was at that time Montgomery got a look at Thacker and was able to identify him as the driver.

Aside from felony evading arrest Thacker was charged Tuesday with driving left of center, speeding, stop sign violation, driving on a revoked license and no insurance.

At the time of the pursuit in April Thacker was free on bond from a 2017 arrest for driving on a revoked licence and no insurance, and also had a failure to appear warrant for those charged pending from March.

Thacker was arraigned Wednesday in Sessions Court and was being held without bond in the Hawkins County Jail pending his next court date on Aug. 15.

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