CHAMBERS COUNTY, Ala. - A Coweta County Sheriff's Office deputy is dead after being hit by a police officer from Lanett, Alabama, following a high-speed chase on Interstate 85 in Chambers County, Alabama, according to officials.
The chase, which involved a stolen car, began in Georgia and crossed the state line into Alabama where the deadly crash occurred, according to the Lanett Police Department.
According to Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, 31-year-old Coweta County Sheriff Deputy Eric A. Minix was fatally injured when he was struck as he was exiting his 2017 Dodge Charger by a 2017 Ford Explorer patrol vehicle driven by 28-year-old Lanett Police Department officer Cornelius J. Robinson of Valley, Alabama.
Robinson was responding to assist Deputy Minix, who was in pursuit of 25-year-old De'cedric Vonche Donson from Pensacola, Florida, who was allegedly driving a stolen 2022 Dodge Challenger. Deputy Minix was transported to East Alabama Medical Center-Lanier in Valley where he died from his injuries.
The following agencies responded to assist Coweta County Sheriff’s Office, Troup County Sheriff's Office, Grantville Police Department, Lanett Police Department, West Point Police Department, Chambers County Sheriff's Office and Georgia State Patrol (GSP). The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency is in charge of the investigation into the chase and the death of the officer.
Deputy Sheriff Eric Minix died in the line of duty in the early hours of Thursday, January 4, 2024 (Coweta County Sheriff's Office).
According to Coweta County Sheriff's Office, Minix was a dedicated deputy and K9 officer and "he was a friend to everyone who knew him."
According to Minix's LinkedIn profile, he also worked for the Tyrone Police Department for several years.
Minix leaves behind a wife and 3 daughters.
The Lanett police officer has been put on administrative leave pending results of the investigation.
Donson has been charged with receiving a stolen vehicle and fleeing law enforcement. He is currently being held without bond and has holds from multiple law enforcement agencies, including federal probation.
De'cedric Vonche Donson
The Lanett Police Department is extending its "heartfelt condolences" to the family and the officer's department.
The crash occurred on Interstate 85 near mile marker 78, approximately one south of Lanett, in Chambers County.
Visitation will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. Jan. 7 at Crossroads Church in Sharpsburg. The funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. Jan. 8 at the same church. Minix will be cremated and remain with his family. The family is accepting flowers sent to the funeral home at 38 Jackson St. in Newnan and donations can be made to the Georgia Police K9 Foundation at www.GApolicek9foundation.org or Concerns of Police Survivors at Gacops.org.
A GoFundMe for Minix's wife and daughter has been set up by a friend of the family. It has already raised more than $34,000.