Man charged following chase with speeds of more than 150 mph at times

Photo Courtesy: Claiborne County, TN Jail
Photo Courtesy: Claiborne County, TN Jail(Claiborne County, TN Jail)
Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 10:24 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CLAIBORNE COUNTY, Tn. (WYMT) - An East Tennessee man is in jail on a $250,000 bond after police say he led them on a high-speed chase earlier this week on a motorcycle.

In the morning hours of Wednesday, an officer with the New Tazewell Police Department saw the bike traveling on Highway 33 at speeds of more than 100 mph.

The officer tried to pull the driver over and chased him for a little bit, but had to end the pursuit for safety reasons.

That evening, the same motorcycle was spotted again driving at a high rate of speed heading toward Tazewell on Old Knoxville Road. New Tazewell officers again tried to stop the driver, later identified as Johnathan Pressnell, but he continued on into Tazewell. Once he got there, Tazewell Police took over the pursuit and tried to stop him.

Police say at one point, Pressnell got up to 153 mph on U.S. 25E and kept turning around on the bike to taunt them. We are told he then attempted to hit three officers head-on as the chase made its way onto Dogwood Heights Drive.

The chase ended up in Harrogate and onto Highway 63 where officers were able to get close enough to get his tag number before calling it off.

Claiborne 911 sent the info to the Tennessee Highway Patrol and the neighboring Campbell County Sheriff’s Office. Pressnell was eventually stopped in Lafollette and arrested.

Tazewell Police brought him back to Claiborne County, where he is currently being held.

Pressnell, who is from Tazewell, is charged with two counts of reckless driving, three counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, two counts of evading arrest, two counts of driving on a suspended license, failure to exercise due care, having expired registration and traffic violations.