Law enforcement in Macon County were lead on a high-speed chase Monday night, when Joseph Cyphers, 28, fled from police. Officers with the Franklin Police Department responded to a call at the N&N Express Mart shortly after 9 p.m. on Monday night when an employee reported suspicious behavior. An individual, later identified as Cyphers, has changed his clothing outside of his vehicle at the gas station and had filled up his truck with gas without paying the attendant.
Franklin Police Officer Randy Dula approached Cyphers, who was parked in a Dodge truck at the gas pumps. As Dula opened the passenger door to speak with the suspect, Cyphers drove off at a high rate of speed. Officer Dula initiated a vehicle pursuit along with other officers. Cyphers made a left turn onto Highlands Road and continued for several miles, where he turned left onto Sugar Fork Road.
Cyphers slowed several times before stopping his vehicle. As Officer Dula was exiting his patrol car, Cyphers purposely backed up and rammed Dula’s patrol car. Officer Dula fired his weapon and the truck sped off. The chase continued for approximately another mile and the driver abruptly stopped.
Neither Cyphers nor Officer Dula were injured from the fired bullets. However, they were taken to the emergency room for precautionary reasons. Officer Dula was released with minor injuries from the vehicle crash and Cyphers was transported to the Macon County Detention Center.
Joseph Cyphers was charged with felony speed to elude arrest, three counts of felony assault with a deadly weapon on a government official, careless and reckless driving and no operators license.
Franklin Police Department was assisted by the Macon County Sheriff’s Office, NC State Highway Patrol and the State Bureau of Investigations.