Lexington, N.C. – The North Carolina 911 Board today honored a team of 911 dispatchers who helped law enforcement officers in Davidson County arrest three men accused of robbing a jewelry store in Thomasville and then shooting a driver who was following them.
Jason Beck, Holly Dunn, Loretta Hayes, Maurice Hodges, Lauren Hurd, Courtney Owens, Nicole Rebello, Jamison Sears, and Drake Sluder of the Davidson County 911 Emergency Communication center handled all of the communication during the incident on January 9.
“All of our 911 communicators deal with stressful, chaotic situations, but in this case our communicators were also relaying real-time information that helped lead to the arrest of these suspects,” said Secretary Eric Boyette of the North Carolina Department of Information Technology, who is chair of the 911 Board. “They helped keep this situation from possibly getting worse and we want to make sure we recognize their exceptional work.”
Thomasville officers were dispatched to Avis Jewelry about 12:45 p.m., January 9, in response to a report of an armed robbery. Kerry Chambers had called 911 to say he saw two suspects flee from the store on a moped and that he was following them in his truck.
The moped passenger then pointed a gun at Chambers. The truck rammed the moped, throwing both men to the ground. One man ran while the other retrieved the gun and shot Chambers. Chambers is recovering from the wound.
One of the suspects later led officers on a car chase that reached speeds of nearly 100 mph. Up to 30 law enforcement vehicles were involved in the pursuit. The chase ended in Lexington when the suspect’s car crashed into a Davidson County Sheriff’s Office vehicle.
A second suspect was arrested at an abandoned house, and a third suspect was found in High Point. All were charged with attempted murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon, and kidnapping.
“This case involved rapidly changing situations in the field, multiple jurisdictions, and ongoing danger to the community,’’ said Richard Taylor, executive director of the 911 Board. “As always, good communication is key to success, and this team of 911 communicators did an outstanding job.”
The N.C. 911 Board is responsible for both wireline and wireless 911 communications in the state, as well as related policies and procedures, and it administers the state’s 911 Fund. The fund is used to support equipment purchases for all 911 centers in the state. The board is housed with the N.C. Department of Information Technology.