On May 28, 2020, at approximately 9:25 A.M., the sheriff's department was contacted in reference to an illegal dumping complaint on the side of Younger Access road. Lieutenant Dammon McGilton responded to the area along with Game and Fish Sergeant John Crisman. Officers located spoiled grain, chicken litter, burned rafters, bed springs, and other trash at the dumpsite. Some of the trash was on the county road right of way. Officers canvassed the neighborhood and found a witness that stated a dark blue flatbed truck pulling a dump bed tractor-trailer came through at around 7:00 A.M.
At approximately 10:13 A.M., Lieutenant Dammon McGilton and Sergeant John Crisman located the vehicle and dump trailer along with other sacks of spoiled grain at a residence on the corner of Church Road and Highway 14 East in Saint James. The location is only a few miles from the dumpsite. Officers were able to locate the residence by tracks of mud and skid marks from the site to the residence. Officers approached the yard of the residence where a male was present in the yard working on the blue truck. As Lieutenant McGilton got close to the male, he took off running and jumped into the one-ton flatbed truck. Lieutenant McGilton opened the door and attempted to apprehend the male, who McGilton recognized as Billy Ray WILLIS. WILLIS is a wanted Parole Absconder, who has been wanted since October of 2018, for aggravated assault and fleeing.
WILLIS led Lieutenant McGilton and Sergeant Crisman on a pursuit northbound on Church road. At the intersection of Lindsey Hill Road and Church Road, WILLIS stopped, put his vehicle in reverse and attempted to ram Sergeant Crisman. Sergeant Crisman was able to maneuver his vehicle and get away from WILLIS. WILLIS then turned left onto Lindsey Hill Road and continued for a block or so and stopped again. WILLIS put his vehicle in reverse and went toward Lieutenant McGilton's vehicle at a high rate of speed. Lieutenant McGilton put his vehicle into reverse and began backing, but WILLIS was able to catch McGilton and struck the front end of his police vehicle in an attempt to disable it. The bed of the truck went over the top of the push bumper and into the hood. Lieutenant McGilton exited his vehicle in the middle of Lindsey Hill road and WILLIS went into reverse again attempting to strike McGilton and struck the patrol vehicle a second time before taking off. Lieutenant McGilton discharged his firearm into the back rear dual tires to disable the tires, but WILLIS managed to continue fleeing. Lieutenant McGilton and Sergeant Crisman continued the pursuit. WILLIS turned into a residence in the 2900 block of Lindsey Hill Road while both his and Lieutenant McGilton's vehicle began being disabled but was still functional. A PIT maneuver was administered by McGilton in an effort to end the pursuit safely.
The pursuit was ended at that point and officers attempted to handcuff WILLIS. After a brief struggle, WILLIS was taken into custody without further incident. The Arkansas State Police responded to work the accident. Both vehicles were towed from the scene. Billy Ray WILLIS is being charged with two counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, felony fleeing with property damage, resisting arrest, leaving the scene of the accident, driving on a suspended license, no proof of insurance, reckless driving, fictitious tags, and littering. He also has a no bond absconder warrant out of the board of parole.