Elizabethtown officer falls off retaining wall during chase; suspect jumps off roof

Nathan and Johnny Parnell (Source: Hardin County Detention Center)
Nathan and Johnny Parnell (Source: Hardin County Detention Center)
Published: May. 27, 2019 at 4:32 PM EDT
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ELIZABETHTOWN, Ky. (WAVE) – An officer was injured when he fell off a retaining wall while chasing a suspect.

Police were checking a suspicious vehicle in the 2100 block of North Dixie Avenue around 3 p.m. Sunday, according to an arrest report. The driver Nathan Parnell, 20, his wife, Johnny Parnell, 21, and three children; a 7-month-old, 1-year-old and 3-year-old, were inside the vehicle.

Officers said when Nathan Parnell saw police he pulled into a parking spot at a vapor shop and got out of the vehicle. Police said the vehicle smelled like marijuana and Nathan Parnell gave them consent to search the vehicle. In the center console officers found a small plastic bag with white powder residue suspected to be methamphetamine and a cigarette park with marijuana inside.

Police said once Nathan Parnell saw officers found the drugs he took off running and jumped a fence. An officer who was chasing him fell and suffered a head injury, abrasions to the head and stiffness in his neck and back. The officer was taken to Hardin Memorial Hospital.

Nathan Parnell continued to run across North Dixie Avenue and ran into a dead end at the corner of Mousers Cabinets. Police said he then climbed onto the roof and jumped off the north end of the building. A passerby saw Nathan Parnell jump and held him on the ground until police could take him into custody.

Police said in addition to the drugs in the console, they also found a marijuana grinder under the passenger seat, a container of methamphetamine, a marijuana pipe within reach of the children, three logs modified to be clubs, and a loaded .22 caliber pistol in the trunk.

Nathan and Johnny Parnell were booked into the Hardin County Detention Center.

Nathan Parnell was charged with wanton endangerment; wanton endangerment of a police officer, assault of a police officer, possession of handgun by convicted felon, fleeing or evading police on foot, possession of a controlled substance – methamphetamine, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, carrying a concealed weapon, criminal mischief and criminal trespassing.

Johnny Parnell was charged with wanton endangerment, possession of a controlled substance – methamphetamine, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

The children were placed in protective custody.

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