ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. — Two more men have been arrested after a chase that hit speeds over 100 mph across two counties and search that found a pound of marijuana.
Juvonta Lafond, 23, and Demtrious Tyrone Lane were both arrested and are facing charges, the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office announced Tuesday.
Albert Britford, 23, was previously arrested in this case.
Just before midnight on June 1, a Rowan County Sheriff’s deputy stopped a car on Highway 52 in Gold Hill for a minor traffic violation.
The deputy found the driver of the vehicle, later identified as Lafond, did not have a driver’s license, and the deputy smelled a strong odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle, the sheriff’s office reports. Looking inside the vehicle, the deputy saw a magazine for an assault rifle in plain view.
The passenger of the vehicle, later identified as Britford, also said he did not have identification.
The deputy called for backup to assist in the investigation. Before backup arrived, the suspect vehicle sped off and the deputy returned to his car to begin pursuing the car. The pursuit reached speeds in excess of 100 mph.
The chase entered Stanly County, and continued into Albemarle where the suspect vehicle wrecked on Church Street. Both men jumped from the car and ran into the woods.
Additional units arrived from Albemarle Police, Stanly County Sheriff’s Office, and Rowan County Sheriff’s Office but were unable to find the men.
A search of the suspect vehicle revealed an AR-15 rifle, stolen out of Winston-Salem, as well as a loaded handgun, ski mask, gloves and marijuana. Deputies believe they had interrupted the men during some type of criminal activity that they were either traveling to or from.
The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Division joined the investigation and determined the men appeared to be from Winston-Salem.
Through a forensic search of the electronic devices recovered from the car, and the deputy’s body cam video, detectives were able to identify the driver as Lafond.
RCSO Detectives contacted detectives with the Winston-Salem Police Department and were able to identify the second suspect as Britford.
Both suspects are known Blood gang members with lengthy criminal histories, and Britford was wanted at the time by Winston-Salem Police.
Winston-Salem learned that Britford was possibly traveling to the area of Spencer, N.C., in Rowan County.
On Wednesday, RCSO detectives determined Britford was possibly located at a residence at 614 Meadow Lane in Spencer.
Rowan Sheriff’s detectives, the RCSO Criminal Enforcement Team, as well as Winston-Salem Police and Forsyth County Sheriff’s detectives, joined a U.S. Marshal’s Office task force and conducted surveillance on the residence. During this surveillance, the investigators identified Albert Britford walking outside the residence.
Authorities surrounded the residence and approached as Britford, and another man ran inside the residence.
Detectives made repeated commands for the subjects to come out, and eventually both subjects came out the door.
While investigators were attempting to arrest the fugitive, a handgun was observed tucked between the seats of a car parked in front of the residence.
Britford was identified and arrested on the outstanding Forsyth County charges. Britford was taken to the Rowan County Detention Center under no bond on the Forsyth County charges, with additional charges from the various Rowan County offenses.
A search revealed the key for the car containing the handgun. A search warrant was obtained for this residence at 614 Meadow Lane.
During the June 5 search of the home a loaded 9mm handgun was seized, as well as drug paraphernalia and approximately one pound of marijuana. Deputies concluded that the marijuana belonged to Lane.
Lafond was later arrested in Albemarle and served with felony arrest warrants for possession of a stolen vehicle, speed to elude arrest and felony possession of a firearm by a felon, according to a Tuesday announcement. He posted his $20,000 secured bond and was released.
Rowan County deputies found Lane Monday night as a passenger in a vehicle during a traffic stop. Deputies say he had marijuana. He was charged with possession of marijuana and the previous warrants. He received a $5,000 secured bond.