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Arrest made on Screven County inmate who skipped out on August work release

A Sylvania man who walked away from a work release program in Screven County in August has been arrested in Garden City.

Palmer Alton “Pablo” Bazemore III, 42, was convicted of possessing methamphetamine and was serving his sentence in a work release program, spending nights in the Screven County jail and days working as a mechanic. He walked away from the work release program on Aug. 4 and authorities began searching for him.

He turned up early this year, in a burn unit in a hospital in Winston-Salem, N.C. Police said he suffered third-degree burns in a house explosion and had been hospitalized for several weeks.

Detectives at the time said Bazemore would be arrested as soon as he was released from the hospital. But before Screven County authorities were notified that he was ready to leave the hospital, Bazemore took off again. This time, he turned up in Garden City.

A police officer pulled him over for failing to have his headlights on as he traveled on Highway 21, at about 9 p.m. on March 4, according to Garden City police Capt. Gilbert Ballard. Bazemore at first pulled over, but when the officer asked for his license, he floored it, Ballard said.

“The way he took off could have injured the officer,” Ballard said. At one point in the chase, Bazemore turned the pickup truck toward the patrol car that was pursuing him. Eventually, Bazemore ditched the truck and fled on foot.

Police found him a short while later, in a nearby motel where he had been staying, Ballard said. They arrested him and charged him with aggravated assault on a police officer, fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, obstruction of an officer, no headlights, no insurance and operating a motor vehicle with suspended registration.

Just where was Bazemore and what was he doing between the North Carolina hospital and Garden City? Ballard said he doesn’t know. “He made no statements about what he was doing before,” Ballard said.

The Screven County Sheriff’s Department has placed a “hold” on Bazemore, said Cpl. Brett Dickerson. “Eventually, he’ll be transported back here,” Dickerson said. Ballard said it’s likely that Bazemore will face the charges from Garden City before he’s returned to Screven County.

He faces up to 10 years in prison for the escape charge.