Suspect accused of stealing High Point police car, leading law enforcement on chase out of hospital and in jail

Abraham G. Burns

HIGH POINT, N.C. — A suspect who police say stole a High Point police car and led law enforcement on a chase is out of the hospital and in jail.

Abraham G. Burns, 38, of Trinity, was jailed in Guilford County under a $175,000 bond on various charges including assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer and larceny of a motor vehicle.

At about 6:40 p.m. on Thursday, High Point police responded to the Walmart Supercenter at 2628 S. Main St. after a call about a man inside the store concealing merchandise and preparing to leave the store without paying.

A Walmart loss prevention worker approached and detained the suspect, according to a press release from the High Point police.

Arriving officers learned that Burns had gotten into a physical confrontation with the Walmart worker before being detained. When High Point officers arrived, Burns allegedly tried to flee from them as well.

Burns was handcuffed by officers and placed in a seated position in the rear of a marked police vehicle.

While officers were completing other tasks related to the investigation, including getting stolen items from the vehicle Burns was driving when he got to Walmart, officials said Burns was able to move the handcuffs from behind his back to the front of his body.

Burns then allegedly managed to unsecure the shield that separates the front cabin of the vehicle from the rear transport area and climbed into the driver’s seat of the police vehicle and drove away from the parking lot in the police vehicle.

Police began pursuing the police vehicle through High Point into Greensboro on Interstate 40 East ending at the Alamance County line at exit 138.

During the chase, a Greensboro Police Department officer deployed stop sticks. High Point police also got help from the North Carolina State Highway Patrol and Guilford County Sheriff’s Office. Assisting units boxed the stolen vehicle in which ended the chase and Burns was apprehended.

“It’s terrifying, it’s like something you see in a movie, it’s not something you expect in your life and especially from a family member,” said Burns’ sister Leslie Martin.

Martin said that her brother has struggled with mental health issues and has a history of drug use. She said that she hopes the incident will lead to changes in her brother’s life.

“I just hope that whatever incarceration he does, whatever time he does in prison will change him. Finally, he’ll grow up and live a good life, this is just not it,” she said.

High Point police officers assumed custody of Burns. The suspect was taken to High Point Regional Hospital where he was placed under a medical evaluation. The hospital listed him in critical condition as of Friday.