Law enforcement officials say that a man killed in a wreck in Gordon County during a police chase Tuesday was a suspect in a robbery Monday of a Cedar Bluff, Ala., convenience store.

Bobby Spears, 39, of 28 Melody Lane, Rome, was killed Tuesday after a pursuit that ended in a head-on collision, according to Lt. Paul Cosper, a Georgia State Patrol information officer.

Spears was a suspect in a Monday night robbery of a convenience store in Cedar Bluff, Ala., according to Cedar Bluff Police Chief Steve Walden.

Walden told the Calhoun Times that a man fitting Spears’ description, and driving a similar vehicle, stole two moneybags containing an undisclosed amount of cash and checks from the Country Store on Ala. 9 North in Cedar Bluff. According to Gordon County Sheriff Mitch Ralston, checks written to the Country Store were recovered from Spears’ vehicle.

Chief Walden said he could not confirm if Spears was the culprit in the robbery until evidence was returned from Gordon County.

According to Ralston, the pursuit began when Spears was pulled over by a Calhoun police officer at around 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

A sheriff’s deputy attempted to block the fleeing vehicle on East Line Street, where Spears left the roadway and drove across Fain Cemetery.

At the intersection of Ga. 156 and U.S. 411, Spears turned left, traveling north on U.S. 411, where a deputy sheriff pulled alongside the suspect vehicle in an attempt to stop it.

Spears drove his vehicle into the deputy’s car and then lost control, crossing into the path of an oncoming truck and camper. A head-on collision resulted in Spears being ejected from his automobile. The driver of the truck/camper was slightly injured.

“It blows your mind to think people believe they are going to elude officials, that they’re going to get away,” Ralston said.

Ralston said while it is a tragedy that Spears was killed, officers were within department guidelines in pursuing Spears.

“It is our job to protect citizens,” Ralston said. “He had every opportunity to pull over. This individual chose to do what he did.”

The collision is being investigated by the Georgia State Patrol.

Rome News Tribune