Natchez woman crashes into bayou after fleeing from officers

Published 12:01 am Saturday, January 10, 2015

Jason’s Body Shop tow truck operator Dustin Owens places hooks underneath a car that rolled into a bayou after the driver, Taraus Granger, tried to elude Natchez Police Department officers. Granger was fleeing Walmart after shoplifting a dog harness and Neosporin. (Sam Gause / The Natchez Democrat)

Jason’s Body Shop tow truck operator Dustin Owens places hooks underneath a car that rolled into a bayou after the driver, Taraus Granger, tried to elude Natchez Police Department officers. Granger was fleeing Walmart after shoplifting a dog harness and Neosporin. (Sam Gause / The Natchez Democrat)

NATCHEZ The theft of a dog harness and bottle of antibiotic ointment led Natchez police on a chase that ended with a car in a bayou and its driver in the hospital.

Natchez police responded to a call of shoplifting at approximately 9:25 a.m. Friday and were nearly hit by Taraus Granger, 27, who was leaving Walmart’s parking lot in her car, NPD Detective Jerry Ford said.

Natchez Water Works employees, from left, Will Johnson, Jeremy Johnson and Jeno Walker carry a fire hydrant out of the bayou that a Granger’s car crashed into during the chase. (Sam Gause / The Natchez Democrat)

Natchez Water Works employees, from left, Will Johnson, Jeremy Johnson and Jeno Walker carry a fire hydrant out of the bayou that a Granger’s car crashed into during the chase. (Sam Gause / The Natchez Democrat)

The officers were able to back up and avoid being hit by Granger’s car and began pursuing the Natchez resident north on Seargent S. Prentiss Drive.

When Granger tried to make a right turn on Old Washington Road near Holiday Apartments, she lost control of the vehicle and it flipped over as it went into the top part of a bayou, Ford said.

Granger’s car damaged a stop sign, fire hydrant and cable box along the way.

Granger told officers she didn’t have any injuries, but she was still transported to Natchez Regional Medical Center to be examined.

She was booked into the Natchez City Jail on charges of shoplifting, disregard for traffic device, reckless driving, no proof of insurance and fleeing from police officers.

Granger was released on a $2,697 bond Friday afternoon.

Following an interrogation, Ford said officers determined Granger had stolen a dog harness and a bottle of Neosporin from Walmart before fleeing.