A judge set a $2 million bail for a man charged with stealing a car and leading police on a chase that ended in a crash, killing a 24-year-old Durham County deputy.
Durham County Sheriff Mike Andrews, members of his staff, and Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood attended the hearing Monday. Some detention officers wore black mourning bands across their gold shields in memory of detention officer Brooke Maynard.
The suspect, Tomaris Parker, is charged with second-degree murder. Other charges related to the car chase include felony fleeing to elude causing death, felony death by motor vehicle, failure to stop for a red light, possession of a stolen vehicle and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Parker is also charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon. Police said Parker stole an Accord at gunpoint Thursday morning.
District Court Judge Fred Battalgia set bail at $100,000 for Parker’s passenger, Deshon Carrington, who faces a possession of a stolen motor vehicle and other charges.
Carrington, 23, was in a wheel chair during his Monday morning court hearing.
Parker, 33, refused to pull over when officers tried to stop him around 7:45 p.m. Thursday near the intersection of Elizabeth and Ramseur streets, according to police.
The intersection is near the Durham County Health and Human Services building and the future Police Department headquarters now under construction.
Parker drove east on Club Boulevard.
He caused a collision with two other vehicles – a Chevy Impala and a Hyundai Sonata – near the North Duke Street intersection, just east of Northgate Mall, according to police.
The driver of the Hyundai, Maynard, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Maynard started working for the Durham County Sheriff’s Office in November 2017.
“She was very, very sweet, very kindhearted,” said April Ketner, who is from Durham but now lives in Timberlake in Person County. “She was very outgoing. She loved all types of people. … Everybody who knew her loved her.”
Parker and Carrington were hurt, along with two women in a Chevrolet that the fleeing car hit, police said.
All were taken to the hospital. The two women in the Impala were treated for minor injuries, said police spokeswoman Kammie Michael. Parker told police he had consumed crack-cocaine and alcohol before the chase, according to a search warrant.
In 2007, Parker was convicted of robbery with a dangerous weapon and speeding to elude arrest from May 2006 offenses, according to the N.C. Department of Correction. He was released in 2014.
Parker was also convicted in 2006 of possession of a firearm by a felon and in 2004 of assault inflicting serious bodily injury for a September 2003 offense.
Car chase policy
Police haven’t provided more information on the car chase, including exactly how the fatal collision occurred and how fast the cars were traveling.
The department’s Professional Standards Division is investigating the pursuit, which is required for all departmental pursuits.
According to the department’s General Orders, officers can engage in a vehicle pursuit when they believe someone has committed a violent felony and “poses a threat of serious injury to the public or other police officers if she/he is not apprehended immediately.”
Pursuits are prohibited when the lead officer pursuing the vehicle feels the hazard created by the pursuit outweighs the necessity of immediate apprehension, or when the officer can identify and apprehend the suspect later and the suspect doesn’t pose a serious threat of injury to the public or police, the policy states.