Updated: Jul 17, 2021
By Joe Johnson
A convicted and armed felon was recently arrested after he reportedly fled from a traffic stop.
According to an Athens-Clarke County police report, Officer Elmer Jaramillo was on patrol at about 6:30 p.m. on July 9 when he saw a pickup truck run a stop sign at the intersection of Fairview Street and Nellie B Avenue.
After the officer initiated a stop on the vehicle, the driver falsely identified himself as Jonathan Almond, according to the report, which indicated that the driver ran off toward a wooded area between Vine and Arch streets as Jaramillo returned to his patrol car to try to ascertain the driver’s true identity.
Other officers soon arrived at the scene and began searching for the driver, according to the report, and he was eventually located and caught by Officer James Austin, with Sgt. Clint Dieball the first officer to arrive to assist in arresting the suspect, who was subsequently positively identified as 37-year-old Major Caslin Simmons. Police said that Simmons fought with Austin and the officer's supervisor before being placed into custody.
When Officer First Class Marcus McQuien and his K-9 partner Tina tracked the path Simmons took when running, they recovered a handgun that Simmons threw into the woods during the chase, according to the police report.
ACCPD publicly thanked on its Facebook page the eastside evening watch officers who worked together in the search for and arrest of “a dangerous felon with a firearm and drugs.“
Simmons was charged with the stop sign violation, driving on a suspended license, giving a false name, two felony and two misdemeanor counts of obstruction of a law enforcement officer, two counts of simple battery on a police officer, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, and possession with intent to distribute heroin.
The address for Simmons on the police report was listed as being on Magnolia Way, but he was booked into the county jail with an Atlanta address.
Two days after his arrest, Simmons was released from jail upon posting security bonds totaling $16,000.