Fugitive captured after causing several Bulloch County school lockdowns

Fugitive captured after causing several Bulloch County school lockdowns
(Source: WTOC)

BULLOCH CO., GA (WTOC) - A man running from sheriff's deputies prompted school lockdowns in Statesboro Wednesday afternoon.

Officials captured him after he hit in the woods for several hours. The foot chase turned manhunt started with a man going door to door suspiciously asking questions.

Deputies got a call about him and responded to Westside Road. They found him on the backside of a church and started asking who he was and what he was doing there.

"When they tried to detain him because he was not cooperating, he snatched away," said Sheriff Noel Brown, Bulloch County. "When he snatched away, he was tased twice - with no effect."

He ran into woods near Bulloch Academy, and it and nearby Julia P. Bryant Elementary went into phases of lockdown. Bloodhounds and a Georgia State Patrol helicopter joined the search. Tips from witnesses shifted the search to Country Club Road. Around 1 p.m., the search team found John Joyner and led him from the woods in custody.

"We were able to evade for a little while, but with good citizens calling things in, we were able to arrest this subject," Sheriff Brown said.

Early on, deputies thought he was simply a burglar looking for homes to rob, but they quickly realized Joyner was part of a federal investigation for drug and gun trafficking. U.S. Attorneys announced Wednesday afternoon he was one of the 30 people indicted in a two-year investigation.

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