A Williamsburg man is in jail after leading police on a half-mile foot chase Thursday afternoon where a police K-9 suffered cuts to its paws while tracking the suspect.
Williamsburg Police Officer Greg Rhoades arrested Franklin Abe Mills, 35, of 147 Levi Lay Road, about 5:19 p.m. Thursday on Collins Lane.
Mills was standing on the porch of Tim Lawson, who lives on Brush Arbor Road, when police arrived at the residence, according to his arrest citation.
Williamsburg Police Chief Wayne Bird said officers went there to serve Mills with four felony arrest warrants.
Rhoades told Mills to walk towards him, but instead he allegedly ran inside the house and out the back door and into the woods as Rhoades yelled, “stop” several times, the citation stated.
Rhoades and Officer Ladale Rider pursued Mills and were joined by K-9 Officer Elijah Hunter and his police K-9, Vicko.
While chasing Mills, Rhoades and Rider damaged their uniforms and Vicko suffered large cuts to his front leg and back leg.
Police finally located Mills in a culvert about half a mile away, and he was ordered to come out but did not comply, according to the citation.
Police then took Mills out of the culvert, but he refused to walk up the hill to the road and officers had to physically assist him up the hill, Rhoades wrote.
Police charged Mills with first-degree fleeing or evading police, menacing, disorderly conduct, second-degree wanton endangerment, public intoxication and first-degree criminal mischief.
He was lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.
Bird said that Vicko wasn’t badly injured during the pursuit.
Mills was also charged with assault on a service animal, but Bird explained that the charge is expected to be dismissed since Mills didn’t actually assault the animal but instead it was injured while tracking him.
Mills pleaded not guilty to all charges in this case when he was arraigned Monday afternoon in Whitley District Court.
Judge Cathy Prewitt appointed the public advocate’s office to represent Mills, scheduled an Aug. 20 preliminary hearing in all three of his cases and set a $25,000 cash bond in this case.
Mills pleaded guilty to contempt of court in connection with a July 2 methamphetamine-related case, and not guilty to drug and drug paraphernalia charges.
Prewitt sentenced him to a 30-day jail sentence on the contempt charge, and set a $50,000 cash bond in that case. An Aug. 20 preliminary hearing is set in that case too.
Court records indicate that Mills is also facing charges in connection with a circuit court case.