More details have been made public about a Friday, August 2 incident that led to a police chase in Magnolia, and the arrests of two California men.
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Ryan Phillips has filed formal criminal charges, known in legal terms as an “information,” against Damien Andrew Wolfson, 25, and his brother, Nicholas Payne Wolfson, 20, in Columbia County Circuit Court.
The charges against both men, from Manteca, CA, differ slightly but the basic details of the crime are the same.
Damien Wolfson was identified as the driver of a vehicle that was observed by law enforcement running a stop sign near the intersection of Clay and Union streets. Nicholas Wolfson was the passenger.
“When an officer attempted to stop the vehicle, they sped off and continued fleeing at a high rate of speed and driving in a reckless manner. During the chase, the vehicle slowed, and Nicholas Wolfson jumped out of the vehicle and fled by foot.
“The driver of the vehicle continued to flee in the vehicle, almost striking a two-year-old child. The defendant then rammed into a Magnolia police patrol unit, causing more than $25,000 in damage, and fled by foot; however, (Damien Wolfson) was later apprehended,” the information said.
“A search of the vehicle revealed numerous loaded firearms, marijuana in jars and bags, and a large bag of methamphetamine,” the information said.
Damien Wolfson has previously been convicted of at least four prior felony offenses in California, the information said.
Damien Wolfson is charged with fleeing, criminal mischief first degree with more than $25,000 in property damage, aggravated assault, possession of methamphetamine (more than 10 grams but less than 200 grams) with purpose to deliver, possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance (more than four ounces, less than 25 pounds) with purpose to deliver, trafficking a controlled substance, and possession of firearms by certain persons.
Nicholas Wolfson is charged with fleeing, possession of methamphetamine (more than 10 grams but less than 200 grams) with purpose to deliver, possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance (more than four ounces, less than 25 pounds) with purpose to deliver, and possession of firearms by certain persons.
The search for the Wolfsons took place on the west side of Magnolia for most of Friday afternoon and evening after their vehicle rammed the Magnolia police car on South Height Street. They squeezed past another roadblock while fleeing. The vehicle eventually wrecked on North Height Street.
No officers were injured.
The two men ended up hitching a ride to Texarkana, where they were apprehended.
Sheriff Mike Loe said that firearms were found in the vehicle that lawmen seized.
The illegal substances were found in the wrecked vehicle.
Loe said at the time that lawmen had no idea why the Wolfsons would be in Columbia County – halfway across the country from Manteca, CA. Manteca is in San Joaquin County, east of the San Francisco-Oakland metropolitan.
Both men have criminal records. They were arrested as the result of a March 2018 incident in Manteca. They were two of four men who were charged with shooting at five people who were inside a parked car. Three of the four – including two children – were wounded, Loe said. The California charges included conspiracy to commit a crime and attempted willful murder.
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