Occupants flee from crash

Published 1:41 pm Thursday, January 25, 2018

A one-vehicle crash resulted in an arrest Wednesday afternoon.

According to a report, officers with the Middlesboro Police Department responded to a call of a crash in Middlesboro at Queensbury Heights and Doncaster Avenue. Officers Jeremiah Johnson, Joel Quillen and Josh Harris arrived at the scene and found that a silver SUV had struck a tree, causing severe damage to the vehicle. Eyewitnesses told the officers that the occupants, two males and a four-year-old child, had fled the scene.

Johnson caught up with the trio at Mountain View Apartments. The report states that the driver, Bryan Patton, had a major head wound and was flown out by Lifestar to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville for treatment of serious head trauma.

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According to the citation, the other occupant of the vehicle who had initially fled in a different direction than Patton was identified as 32-year-old James H. Fuston of Middlesboro. When questioned about the incident, the citation states that Fuston told Johnson that he and the child were not in the accident, but eyewitness statements contradicted that claim.

Fuston was found to have an outstanding warrant from 2016. When he found this out he told the officer he was injured, so he was taken to Middlesboro ARH for examination.

Once released, Fuston was lodged in the Bell County Detention Center and charged with second-degree criminal abuse (child under 12 years old) and second-degree hindering prosecution or apprehension.

Brian O’Brien of The Big One WRIL contributed to this report.