Driver fleeing deputies crashes into tree in front of Piedmont Fayette Hospital


The New Year’s holiday weekend included an array of incidents of various types for local law enforcement officials to deal with.

According to reports, an intoxicated driver was spotted in the wee hours of Dec. 31 by Fayette County Sheriff’s Office deputies and forced them to pursue him until he crashed his car near the front entrance of Piedmont Fayette Hospital. He hit a tree but was not injured.

Shafik Ali, 22, of Stone Mountain was charged with two felony counts of fleeing/eluding law enforcement as well as DUI of alcohol and driving with a suspended license. A number of other traffic violations were added as well, according to the Fayette County Jail log.

Many of those charges were related to activities in the city of Fayetteville, where it appears Ali eluded officers who attempted to stop him. Deputies were able to identify him using their cameras as he continued traveling through the county and ultimately take him into custody when he lost control just past Sandy Creek Road on Hwy. 54.

Elsewhere in Fayette County, at roughly the same time as the aforementioned pursuit, an unrelated case involving a domestic dispute at a residence on Thornton Lane resulted in an arrest.

Otis Parham, 60, of Fayetteville was charged with reckless conduct, false imprisonment and aggravated assault. All three are felonies. An additional charge of pointing a weapon at another person was listed on the jail log as well.

These charges were the result of an altercation with the suspect and his wife. The report alleged that he did not allow her to leave the residence and at one point during the argument pointed a gun at her.

Just a few hours into 2024, suspicious activities at a house under construction and alert actions by deputies led to the arrest of an alleged thief.

A lot on Longville Road had been the site of previous thefts of building materials, according to a report, so deputies were keeping a close eye on the area with extra patrols. A deputy in the area Jan. 1 at about 4:45 a.m. noticed a suspicious vehicle parked at that location with the trunk open and lumber stacked in the back, and a suspect was soon taken into custody.

Juan Rivera, 41, of Riverdale was arrested and charged with felony counts of theft by taking, drug possession/sale/manufacture and crossing the guardline with contraband. He was also charged with loitering or prowling. The report indicated that the suspect had methamphetamine in his possession when arrested