Stafford Police Beat Deputies put the long arm of the law on serial traffic offender
STAFFORD, VA. – A man wanted for series of hit and run crashes tried out running Stafford deputies on foot when they came a calling on Aug. 22, 2017, according to Stafford Maj. D. R. Lenhart.
Police report that on Saturday, August 19, 2017, at approximately 4:42 PM, Stafford Deputies were dispatched to an accident with injury on Bells Hill Road near Fair Oaks Avenue. Deputy C. A. Gale was first on the scene and observed a Chrysler into a tree off the roadway. The driver of the vehicle approached the deputy and handed her a Virginia license plate that had fallen off of the vehicle that struck her. She further explained that the accident occurred when a blue Ford SUV that was traveling at a high rate of speed made an illegal U-turn in front of her and the vehicles collided. The SUV then fled the scene.
Deputy Gale broadcast a lookout to other responding units and learned the same vehicle had been involved in another hit and run just previous to this one. She worked the accident and after clearing the scene began looking for the suspect vehicle.
While Deputy Gale was driving north on Bells Hill Road, a citizen stopped her and advised a blue Ford SUV had just passed her over the double yellow line and then turned onto Bell Vine Lane. Deputy Gale checked the area and located the vehicle, unattended in a travel lane. There was damage to the vehicle and the tag left behind at the accident scene matched the tag on the rear of the Ford SUV. A K-9 was requested to do a track but was unable to locate the driver.
A subsequent investigation began and it was determined the driver of the hit and run vehicle was John Watts. It was also found that Watts had prior contacts with the Sheriff’s Office and had given an address that was in the area of where the Ford SUV had been found abandoned. It was learned that there were two warrants (Capias) on file for his arrest out of Stafford County.
Deputies went to the address where Mr. Watts had been connected to on prior occasions. As they approached the home, he ran out the back door. Deputies chased him and he made his way back into the house with the deputies in pursuit. He was subsequently arrested on the lower floor of the home.
John Alexander Watts, thirty-one-years-old from Stafford County, was arrested for Unauthorized Use of a Vehicle, two counts of Hit and Run, Driving Under the Influence, Driving on Suspended and various other traffic charges. He was held on no bond at the Rappahannock Regional Detention Center.