Man charged with murder after chase in stolen SCMPD car - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Driver accused in chase, shootout charged with murder

Anthony Parrish Jr. (Source: Chatham County Detention Center) Anthony Parrish Jr. (Source: Chatham County Detention Center)
Patrol Officer Rebekah Gregory (Source: SCMPD) Patrol Officer Rebekah Gregory (Source: SCMPD)

A chase and shootout with Savannah-Chatham Metro Police on Wednesday night stemmed from an investigation into a man's death on Feb. 24. 

On Wednesday, Anthony B. Parrish Jr., 21, was charged with the Feb. 24 death of Marray Martin, which occurred at a party on Florida Avenue. Savannah-Chatham Metro Police were looking for him.

SCMPD Central Precinct Crime Suppression and TRAP Units were searching for Parrish in the Cuyler-Brownsville neighborhood.

Police said that at about 6:35 p.m. Wednesday, Parrish and Nathaniel Johnson stole a 2010 Chevrolet Malibu at gunpoint across town in the 800 block of West 33rd Street.

Police spotted the stolen car and followed it to West 40th and Burroughs streets. Police said Parrish and Johnson got out of the car and ran in different directions.

An officer left his patrol car to confront Johnson as Parrish circled around a house, jumped into his police car and drove off, according to SCMPD. Parrish drove the SCMPD cruiser toward another officer who dove into his own patrol car to avoid getting hit.

Police chased the stolen cruiser east on 37th Street until Parrish turned into oncoming traffic and drove west onto the I-16 connector and the interstate.

Police said Parrish crossed the center line three times while shooting at officers. Police put down tire spikes to stop him. He ran off the road into the woods between the Interstate 516 and Chatham Parkway exits in order to avoid the tire spikes.

Parrish got out of the car and started shooting and officers fired back at him, according to SCMPD. Patrol officer Rebekah Gregory was shot in the leg and her finger was injured. Police said her cell phone deflected the bullet that struck her leg.

I-16 westbound was closed from 6:45 p.m. until 1:20 a.m. Thursday for the investigation.

Police conducted an extensive search for Johnson in the area where the Chevrolet Malibu had been abandoned.

Johnson was arrested Thursday by SCMPD, Canine, TRAP officers and U.S. Marshals from the Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force. He has been charged with being party to the crime of murder, party to the crime of aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm in the commission of a crime. Those are on top of his charges from Wednesday's incident: possession of a firearm in commission of a crime; armed robbery; aggravated assault and hijacking a motor vehicle.

Parrish and Gregory were taken to Memorial University Medical Center. They were treated for non-life-threatening injuries and released.

Parrish has also been charged with hijacking a motor vehicle, armed robbery, two counts of aggravated assault, aggravated assault on a police officer, theft by taking, criminal attempt and criminal attempt at murder, possession of a firearm in committing a crime and fleeing to elude police officers.

The investigation into the auto thefts, shootings and the homicide as well as potentially other crimes is continuing.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call Crimestoppers at 912.234.2020 or text CRIMES (274637). In the body type, include "CStop2020" plus the tip. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

A confidential tipline is open directly to investigators at 912.525.3124. Callers who prefer to speak directly to the detectives without the possibility of a can arrange private discussions.

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