Armed robbery chase turns deadly in Toombs County - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Armed robbery chase turns deadly in Toombs County

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Traffic along US Highway 1 backed up as a crash and a crime scene unfolded on the side of the road. Traffic along US Highway 1 backed up as a crash and a crime scene unfolded on the side of the road.

LYONS, GA (WTOC) - Rescue crews worked to move an SUV long after they knew the man underneath it was dead. Traffic along US Highway 1 backed up as a crash and a crime scene unfolded on the side of the road.

But investigators say the whole thing started at the Sweet Onion Junction store north of Lyons when a man robbed the clerk and drove away toward Vidalia around 6am Thursday.

"They called 911 and Vidalia gave a lookout on the vehicle as a small SUV tan in color with a white male driving," Toombs County sheriff Alvie Kight explained.

Police say the SUV driven by James Burdett led them back into Lyons, headed south on US Highway 1. Investigators said they've arrested Burdett before on fraud charges.

A Lyons police car on the scene showed scuffs on the bumper the sheriff said came from the chase. Kight said Burdett lost control of the SUV a mile or so south of Santa Claus. He said it flipped several times and landed in the ditch with Burdett underneath.

Investigators spent the morning piecing together what happened. With the SUV pulled to the road, crews used the jaws of life to open the door. Once inside, investigators pulled handfulls of money from the floorboard. With law officers involved in the chase, the case will be handled by state investigators.

"It's turned over to the SCRT of the State Patrol and they'll work the crash and the GBI has been called in to investigate the robbery of the convenience store," Sheriff Kight stated.

With the chase through busy streets, Kight is thankful no one else was hurt.

Reported by Dal Cannady, dcannady@wtoc.com 

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