By John L. Ross / Staff Writer
A four-count indictment was handed down by the Whitley County grand jury Monday against a Louisiana man who brought his crime spree to Corbin in October.
Thomas William Bunn, 26, suspected in several crimes in Louisiana and Florida, also has been indicted by a federal grand jury.
Bunn came to Corbin with a Tactical Weapons Solutions AR-15, .223-caliber rifle reported stolen in Florida.
Investigators were led to Fast Cash Pawn Shop in Williamsburg, where Williamsburg Police Chief Wayne Bird advised Bunn had indeed pawned the gun and received $300.
Meanwhile, Corbin Police were dispatched to investigate a suspicious vehicle at the Days Inn near I-75. When Patrolman Kyle Gray went to the vehicle, the driver fled in a 2005 Chevrolet truck and led police on a 24-mile chase on northbound I-75, at times reaching speeds exceeding 100 mph. Five police cruisers were damaged or disabled during the vehicle chase, which ended in the woods near exit 49. Two state police dogs were brought in after the driver abandoned the truck and fled into the woods on foot.
Police quickly learned the suspect was Bunn, and he was captured the next day without incident.
Monday’s indictment only lists charges related to the car and subsequent foot chase. Count I states that Bunn, “…committed the offense of fleeing or evading first degree while operating a motor vehicle when he knowingly or wantonly disobeyed a direction to stop by a motor vehicle driven by Corbin Police Officer James Miller and in the course of fleeing or evading caused or created a substantial risk of physical injury to the officer and other drivers on the highway…”
The second count charges Bunn with committing first-degree criminal mischief by “intentionally doing damage to three police cruisers owned by the Laurel County Sheriff’s Department, two police cruisers owned by the London City Police and one police cruiser owned by the City of Corbin causing damage in excess of $1,000.”
Count III charges Bunn with first-degree fleeing or evading police on foot. The final count for this indictment is first-degree persistent felony offender, as Bunn has previous felony convictions.
In the federal indictment filed in London’s U.S. District Court Nov. 15, Bunn is charged with possessing and affecting interstate commerce with a firearm, an AK-15 rifle.
If convicted, the federal charge carries a maximum 10 year prison sentence, $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release.
An indictment is a formal charge by a grand jury and is not a conviction or an admission of guilt.