Prison escapee tried to run over a George County deputy, sheriff says

Wade Alan Willard
Wade Alan Willard

Deputies arrested a man who escaped from prison and tried to run over a George County sheriff’s deputy, Harrison County Sheriff Troy Peterson said Monday night.

But Wade Willard Jr.’s arrest was not an easy one, Peterson said.

Willard, 32, led deputies on a chase Monday after an attempted traffic stop on Canal Road, Peterson said. Willard did not stop for the deputies and continued driving on Landon Road to County Farm Road and onto Interstate 10 westbound, the sheriff said, when he stopped at the foot of the Wolf River bridge and ran away from the car.

Deputies chased him on foot, Peterson said, “and a fight ensued.”

Peterson said Willard threw off a backpack he was carrying, and deputies found heroin and meth in the backpack.

Willard was wanted by the Mississippi Department of Corrections for escape. It’s not clear when he escaped jail or when he tried to run over the George County deputy.

Willard was arrested on charges of receiving stolen property, possession of meth, felony evasion, failure to comply, assault on a police officer and resisting arrest. He is wanted in George County on charges of aggravated assault and escape.

Harrison County Justice Court Judge Brandon Ladner set Willard’s bond at $150,000 for the charges from Harrison County.

Sun Herald reporter Robin Fitzgerald contributed to this report.

Justin Mitchell: 228-604-0705, @JustinMitchell_