Father of chase suspect says son led police on other chases - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Father of chase suspect says son led police on other chases

Police say the driver that led them on a chase Thursday was Tommy Johnson, a man whose own father says he should have already been behind bars Thursday, not behind the wheel of a stolen car.

"They know who he is," said his father Bobby Johnson. "He's been arrested so many times in Memphis alone, not counting Mississippi, and they continue to let him get out of jail."

Tommy Johnson's rap sheet reads like a career criminal.

In 2001 he was arrested for theft, drugs, reckless driving and burglary.

In 2003 he was found guilty of evading arrest, theft, driving without a license and reckless endangerment.

In 2005 he was convicted of assault and was considered a fugitive.

In January of this year he was picked up again for driving without a license. When it happened again in February, he was caught carrying cocaine.

In April, he violated probation.

"He has done as least as 4 days and as many as 20 in the last 18 months that I know of," his father said.

And according to his father, this isn't the first police pursuit Tommy Johnson has instigated.

"Every time I talk to him I say 'Well, how do you keep getting away' and he says 'They're really not supposed to chase you, I know that and so when I get in court I bring that up and they let me go because they know they're not supposed to do it,'" said his father.

Johnson said his son is not above the law, but had the law cracked down sooner Thursday's chase might not have ended in injury and death.

Bobby Johnson said he tried to visit his son in the hospital but security guards turned him away. He said he's been given very little information about his son's condition.

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