By Associated Press - Thursday, January 23, 2020

LUDOWICI, Ga. (AP) - A sheriff’s deputy died Thursday after his patrol car crashed during a highway pursuit in southeast Georgia.

The crash that killed Long County Deputy Sheldon Whiteman happened before dawn, shortly after he joined a police chase of a driver suspected of running stop signs, news outlets reported.

The deputy appears to have lost control of his cruiser, which veered off the roadway of Highway 57 and crashed in a wooded area, said Capt. Thornell King of the Georgia State Patrol.

Whiteman was taken to a hospital, where he died.

The chase started when a police officer for the small city of Ludowici tried to pull over a driver seen running stop signs at about 3 a.m., Ludowici Police Chief Robert Parker said. Authorities were still searching for the driver Thursday afternoon.

Long County Sheriff Craig Nobles said Whiteman had been working for his department for about four months. He said Whiteman had previously been a deputy in nearby Chatham County, which includes Savannah.

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