Originally created 09/22/99

Officers injured in pursuit of woman



AIKEN -- A woman trying to avoid arrest Tuesday in the Wal-Mart parking lot dragged a sheriff's deputy with her car and later bit a lieutenant in the chest, sheriff's officials said.

Mary Aline Brinkley, 24, of Owens Pond Road, Aiken, tried to flee arrest in her vehicle and dragged Deputy Marcus Padgett with her car, Lt. Charles Cain said. After a lunchtime search ended with the woman's capture behind Fazoli's restaurant, the suspect bit into the chest of Lt. Michael Frank, police said.

The search included more than a dozen police vehicles that surrounded an area around Farmers Furniture on Pine Log Road, where the driver abandoned the vehicle.

"The day shift was on, so there were several deputies on patrol. Plus, when one of our own has got an injury .... we were going to make sure it ended quickly," Lt. Cain said.

Sheriff's officials told this story:

Three deputies were attempting to serve an outstanding warrant for a probation violation against Ms. Brinkley and found her in the Wal-Mart parking lot off Whiskey Road. When they went to arrest her, she cranked up her car and started to speed off.

Deputy Padgett reached inside the car to grab the keys and was dragged 20 feet as the vehicle raced away. He was finally able to get away from the car, but scraped his left arm in the process.

The woman drove behind Farmers Furniture and ran from the car. She then got into a vehicle with a man, who took her to the drive-through of Fazoli's restaurant. That's where Lt. Frank found her and started to apprehend her. Again, she ran.

Lt. Frank tackled the woman, and she bit him.

Sheriff's officials said the man who picked her up was an "unknowing participant" and will not be charged. It was unclear whether he knew the woman.

Both injured deputies were treated and released from local doctors.

Ms. Brinkley was charged with assault and battery with intent to kill and resisting arrest and was held at the Aiken County Detention Center.

A judge in March put Ms. Brinkley on five years' probation and ordered her to pay restitution to a North Augusta bank of $31,275 for a bank-related crime. In 1998, a judge ordered her to serve three years' probation for making obscene telephone calls in North Augusta.

Reach Greg Rickabaugh at (803) 279-6895.