Deputy released from hospital

Deputy Troy Bickhart has been released to his family from Shands-Jacksonville Hospital after an attempt on his life at the hands of a 34 year-old St Augustine man who led law enforcement officers on a reckless, high-speed chase early this morning.

After ramming a St Augustine Police Department vehicle with his silver 2001 GMC pickup truck, Brad Timothy Germain, who resides at 2790 Juarez Avenue in St Augustine, attempted to flee from police officers and St Johns County sheriff’s deputies.

He refused to stop for emergency lights and sirens. In his attempt to escape, Germain collided with other vehicles, was driving along railroad tracks, operating his truck without regard for pedestrians or other drivers on the road and at speeds reported by one witness to be approximately “60 to 80 miles per hour” in the area of the 40 mph zone of North Ponce de Leon Boulevard and SR-16.

In a collision that would end the chase at about 1:00 a.m., Germain rammed his truck directly into the front of Deputy Bickhart’s patrol vehicle with sufficient force to injure the officer’s neck; requiring that he be transported by air ambulance to the trauma center at Shands. The vehicles came to rest in the front yard of a residence located at 459 Hefferon Drive in Heritage Park.

Germain fought with deputies at the collision scene and was shot with a Taser once and direct-stunned twice in an attempt to bring him under control. It was eventually necessary for Germain to be placed in rip-restraints after he began kicking the driver side, rear window bars. He continued screaming as he was transported to Flagler Hospital in St Augustine, Deputy Joey Romer reported.

St. Augustine Wrecker Service transported the vehicles to the Sheriff’s Office impound

By 6:00 a.m., Germain was cleared from the hospital and booked into the St Johns County Detention Facility, where he is being held without bond.

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