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Officials arrested wanted man after days-long crime spree | News

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Officials arrested wanted man after days-long crime spree
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Officials said they arrested a wanted man who has led authorities on a number of high speed chases through several counties during a crime spree that lasted several days.

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Wanted man on the run after crime spree

Since Thursday, Joshua Wayne Cooper stole vehicles and committed arson in several counties, according to the Hamblen County Sheriff's Department.

However the crime spree came to an end at midnight Sunday.

"I'm just glad it ended and he's in custody. Hopefully the courts will see fit to keep him in our custody for quite some time," said Jefferson County Sheriff Bud McCoig.

According to deputies, Cooper stole a vehicle from a Weigels in Dandridge and tried to escape police by going the wrong way on the interstate. Cooper then hit a tractor trailer head on, got out the vehicle, and tried to run away. OfficersTazed him to subdue him, but he was able to rip out the prongs, and run toward a bridge. He jumped over the bridge into a steep embankment. Officials managed to capture him again, after he evaded arrest several times.

ID=24770955This wasn't the first time officials arrested Cooper since the crime spree started. Friday night, Cooper rammed a stolen truck into two Hamblen County Sheriff's Department vehicles during a chase with deputies. Cooper's truck then spun out and rolled onto its top. Crews took Cooper and his passenger to the University of Tennessee Medical Center.

After he was released from the hospital, detectives told Cooper to show them where he left some of the stolen vehicles. At some point, Copper stole a sheriff's department vehicle on Leepers Ferry Road. When they got out of the car to search, Cooper was able to climb through the plexi-glass divider in the patrol car, and steal the vehicle. The entire time, he was in handcuffs. Cooper ditched that vehicle within three miles of where he stole it and fled the area.

"He told us he enjoys stealing cars and joyriding, and steals another one and is repetitious," said Jarnagin.

Authorities believe Cooper's crime spree started when he stole a 2010 Dodge Charger from a Hamblen County car lot.

Cooper's arraignment took place Monday morning. His bail is set at $1 million.


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