Stolen vehicle report leads to attempted river escape

A man turned a stolen vehicle report into a desperate attempt to escape law enforcement by jumping into the Doe River at Riverside Drive south of Hattie Avenue and remaining in the water until being apprehended at the Elizabethton Elks Lodge.
According to a police report filed by the Elizabethton Police Department, the man, identified as 44-year-old Leonard A Price, reportedly stole a red Ford Escort from a residence at 1305 G Spruce Lane and headed toward Arney Street armed with a large knife.
Price was reportedly spotted by Elizabethton Patrolman Nicholas Kerns traveling north on Stateline Road.
When Officer Kerns attempted to stop the vehicle, Price abandoned the vehicle at the corner of Johnson Avenue and Maple Street and ran on foot toward Harold McCormick Elementary before turning right toward Sycamore Street.
Multiple officers surrounded the area before the suspect entered the river.
With Price in the river, officers on both sides trailed the suspect downstream
with concern the situation could become even more dangerous should he reach the mouth of the Doe with the Watauga River where deeper and colder water prevailed.
As the chase neared the Elks Lodge, Elizabethton Police Chief Jason Shaw entered the water opposite the suspect and began to push him closer to the far shoreline.
Patrolman Rocky Crow along with an officer from the Carter County Sheriff's Department entered the water nearest the suspect and the three officers were able to subdue the suspect taking him to shore where he was immediately arrested and placed in handcuffs.
Price was charged with resisting stop/arrest and evading arrest while more charges could be forthcoming as a result of the initial stolen vehicle report.

Photo by Ivan Sanders
A car theft suspect identified as Leonard Price attempts to elude arrest by wading through the Doe River. Elizabethton Police Department patrolman Rocky Croy follows close by.
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Photo by Ivan Sanders
Elizabethton Police Chief Jason Shaw (right) and Patrolman Rocky Croy close in to assist an officer with the Carter County Sheriff's Department secure Leonard Price who was suspected of stealing a car before entering the Doe RIver for a lengthy chase by law enforcement.
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Photo by Ivan Sanders
Leonard Price is carried to the bank after finally being stopped attempting to flee officers in the Doe River.
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Photo by Ivan Sanders
Leonard Price is led away handcuffed after his failed attempt to escape law enforcement in the Doe River.
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