According to a Dalton Police Department incident report, On March 2nd, 2023, at 8:40 PM, Officer Miller responded to the Walmart at 815 Shugart Road about a shoplifting in progress call. Officer Miller located the vehicle as it was attempting to flee the store. Officer Miller attempted to conduct a traffic stop, but the vehicle failed to stop for Officer Miller. The vehicle being driven by Erica Danielle Hamilton, 32, continued to travel south on the outer perimeter of the parking lot for Walmart. Once Erica reached the area of the main entrance to the Walmart parking lot, she began to fail to maintain her lane and began speeding at a high rate of speed, which was not safe to be traveling in this area. Erica failed to stop at the stop sign and attempted to make a left turn which was unsuccessful. The vehicle collided with the middle of a 53-foot flatbed trailer pulled by a tractor. This vehicle was traveling straight ahead into the area behind Walmart. The tractor-trailer’s driver had the right away due to the SUV driven by Erica having a stop sign. Sgt. Saylors arrived on the scene and investigated the crash. Sgt. Saylors reported that Erica’s vehicle had major damage to the front passenger side of the vehicle. Sgt. Saylors asked Erica what had happened, and she responded, “[I] was running from the law and hit the truck.” Loss prevention associates advised officers that the male had shoplifted and noticed several stolen items, such as hair dye, a pack of toothbrushes, and sunglasses lying on the floorboard. Officers also located some pills and a meth pipe. The fire department had to remove the passenger side door completely due to the amount of damage from the crash so the officers could get the stolen items out. Officer Guerrero advised Erica to provide him with a loaded needle and a small baggy of meth. Officers reported that Erica showed signs of drug/meth impairment. Erica was charged with possession of meth, possession of drug-related objects, drugs not in original container, party to a crime (shoplifting), DUI less safe drugs, felony fleeing to elude, and reckless driving.
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