Police foil bold courthouse escape attempt

Courthouse surveillance footage provided by the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office shows Ronard Neal attempted to escape.

An Atlanta man is back in custody and facing additional charges after a daring attempted escape at the Fayette County courthouse. Just after 9 a.m. on Tuesday, September 25, Ronard K. Neal, Jr., 24, made an effort to flee, but Fayette County Sheriff’s Deputies and Fayetteville Police Officers teamed up to take him down.

Neal was in the court room of Judge Fletcher Sams, having not shown up the day before on theft and fleeing from police charges. After his hearing with Judge Sams, Neal was to be taken into custody. He was lead into a side hall to the holding cells where he pushed off the wall and struck a deputy before running away.

He burst through the door into an adjoining court room where court was also in session and headed towards the doors in the back. Surveillance video shows a man in the room trying to get in his way, but Neal bowls over him and out of the room, damaging the doors as he exited.

The chase spilled into the hall where a deputy pulled Neal to the ground by the arm before he broke away and headed down the stairs. Fayetteville Police officers happened to be entering the building at the same time and saw Neal crawling under the turnstile and heading out the exit doors.

Neal was tackled just as he exited the front doors of the court house and pinned down by both deputies and Fayetteville Police officers in pursuit.

Neal plead guilty to the initial charges and was sentenced to five years in prison. He is now facing additional charges of felony obstruction, simple battery, escape, and interference with government property.

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Christopher Dunn has been the sports editor for Fayette Newspapers since 2011, in addition to running Fayette Game Day magazine. He is a graduate of Fayette County schools, as well as a graduate of Georgia State University with a degree in journalism. Follow him on twitter @fayettesports.


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