Man convicted of starting February 2018 'riot' at Hamilton Place Mall arrested again
The man accused of starting a riot at Hamilton Place Mall in February of 2018 has been arrested again.
David Ballard was taken into custody Saturday on charges of evading arrest and possession of a firearm with intent to go armed.
Around 7:00 pm Saturday, gang investigators saw Tavarious Johnson, who also faces charges, and another person get into a Nissan Sentra.
Investigators saw Johnson get behind the wheel. They knew that he did not have a license and also noticed that the windows had a "extremely" dark tint.
Investigators attempted to pull the vehicle over, but Johnson kept driving.
According to court documents, Johnson struggled to control the vehicle and ran off the road several times. He turned at one point and struck a curb, which caused a flat tire.
Police said Johnson was also driving in the wrong lane.
"I maneuvered our vehicle closer to the defendant vehicle, in order to be in position to effect the arrest," one investigator said. "At which point Mr. Johnson turned his vehicle sharply into my police vehicle, striking the front left side of my vehicle..."
This caused the officer to hit a parked vehicle.
Three people then got out of the Nissan and took off.
One of the passengers, investigators identified as Kadarrius Coleman, threw a fully loaded handgun onto the street as he ran from the car, the affidavit explained.
Coleman kept running and was able to get away.
Investigators were able to find and arrest both Johnson and Ballard, who was a passenger.
Ballard was barefoot when he was arrested, and investigators found his shoes in the vehicle. His Tennessee Department of Corrections GPS monitor also showed that he was in the area where the pursuit happened and that he took off on foot.
Police searched the vehicle Ballard, Johnson and Coleman were in and found a "fully loaded, extended 45cal magazine" on the floorboard in front of the seat Ballard had been sitting in and several bullets, which were on top of Ballard's probation papers.
Johnson admitted to investigators that he was the one driving and evading, investigators said.
Johnson also made a comment while in a patrol car with Ballard about the pursuit and a firearm, which police did not recover.
"I tried to ram they ass off the road," Johnson told Ballard, according to the affidavit.
Ballard also admitted to police that he was a passenger in the car and that he ran on foot. Police asked Ballard about a pistol they recovered. He said it wasn't his, but he had touched it the day before. He told officers that since his release from prison on March 5, he had touched at least five different firearms and had even sold one.
Since Ballard is a convicted felon, he is not allowed to be in possession of firearms or around other gang members.
Ballard is being held in the Hamilton County Jail on a $50,000 bond, and Johnson is being held on a $40,000 bond.
Johnson's charges include:
- Aggravated Assault on Police (x2)
- Evading Arrest
- Driving on Roadways Laned for Traffic, Violation
- Driving without Drivers License/ Expired License
Warrants have been issued for Kadarrius Coleman for unlawful possession of a handgun and misdemeanor evading.
Both Ballard and Johnson are due in court on March 25.