From Wythe County Sheriff’s Office
On March 8, 2023, a Wythe County deputy was on patrol on Kimberlin Road in Rural Retreat when he noticed a blue Chevrolet Camaro stopped in the road. The deputy pulled up and spoke to a male that stated he was just making sure he didn’t have a flat tire.
The male quickly got into the car. The deputy noticed a female lying on the road (passenger side) from where the male was walking. The deputy turned on his blue lights and a pursuit began.
The deputy sent other units to check on the female.
Deputies pursued the vehicle into Smyth County on West Lee Highway. The vehicle began driving recklessly passing cars in no-passing zones so deputies tried to trail the vehicle at a safe distance.
The vehicle got onto Interstate 81 northbound and Wythe County Public Schools were notified. In conjunction with School Resource Officers and WCPS, some schools were placed on a modified lockdown.
The vehicle made a sudden exit onto Interstate 77 and then Exit 41 and came into the town of Wytheville. The Wythe County Sheriff’s Office notified the Virginia State Police and Wytheville Police Department for assistance.
The vehicle was located by officers from the Wytheville Police Department and pursued until the driver parked his car behind Derm One on Peppers Ferry Road. The driver ran across the street taking off his sweatshirt trying to elude officers. He ran into Walgreens Pharmacy where he was taken into custody by multiple officers without incident.
He was identified as Joshua Tait Melvin, 5164 Dickerson Road, Partlow, VA (Date of Birth, April 15, 1984). He was wanted on warrants from pursuits in Spotsylvania and Frederick Counties. He was also wanted for capias in Stafford and Spotsylvania counties. He had a warrant issued for his arrest for assault and battery in Spotsylvania as well. He was wanted for 12 outstanding warrants.
Melvin was charged with 12 warrants by the Wythe County Sheriff’s Office and the Wytheville Police Department.
He is currently being held on 24 charges without bond at the New River Regional Jail.
The female from the incident stated they were arguing about the way he was driving so she jumped out of the car and that’s when a deputy drove up to them.