Thousands of dollars in stolen merchandise was recovered Thursday after shoplifting suspects crashed on Dawson Forest Road as they attempted to flee authorities.
Carl Anthony McCrady, 23, of St. Louis, Mo., was arrested at the scene of the single-vehicle wreck. He is being held at the Dawson County jail on $12,000 bond.
McCrady's female passenger, 37-year-old Lakisha Quene Williams of Norcross, was injured when he lost control of the he Dodge Charger he was driving and careened down an embankment.
Williams was taken by ambulance to Northeast Georgia Medical Center for evaluation and later left the Gainesville hospital.
As of Tuesday afternoon, she remained at large, though warrants have been issued for her arrest.
Both suspects have been charged with felony and misdemeanor shoplifting counts, as well as felony possession of tools used during the commission of a crime.
The case began after clerks at Burberry, a shop at North Georgia Premium Outlets, reported a designer handbag had been taken.
Responding to the complaint, Dawson County Sheriff's Deputy James Bruhl recognized the suspects from the clerk's description as they were leaving another store.
"When he attempted to talk to them, they took off running toward their car," said Dawson County Sheriff's Lt. Ray Goodie.
Officers caught up with the pair a short time later, after McCrady crashed in a curve between Riverview Middle and Riverview Elementary schools.
McCrady also faces numerous traffic violations, including reckless driving, passing in a no passing zone and driving on the wrong side of the road.
Officers at the scene said passing motorists reported McCrady traveling west at a high rate of speed on Dawson Forest Road about 3 p.m.
"We were lucky school had just got out, because we had our school resource officers that saw him fly through the intersection of Hwy. 9 without slowing down," Goodie said.
"If it had been just a few minutes earlier, we might not have been that lucky that no one else was hurt."
In addition to designer handbags, clothing, jeans and accessories valued between $5,000 and $6,000, Goodie said deputies also recovered several foil bags, which can be used to conceal items.
Sensors on items in the homemade, foil bags will not trigger shoplifting alarms in stores, he said.