BOONE, N.C. (WJHL) — A man was arrested after allegedly trying to hit pedestrians and leading police on a pursuit while on a tractor in Boone, North Carolina.

According to a release from the Boone Police Department, the 911 center in Watauga County received a call about a man on a John Deere tractor allegedly trying to strike pedestrians and vehicles in the 1600 US Highway 421 S area in Boone just before 9 a.m. Tuesday.

The tractor was located by Boone Police at Three Forks Baptist Church, and the driver, identified by police as Ronnie K. Hicks, 43, had reportedly pushed a dumpster into the building prior to the arrival of officers.

Hicks reportedly led officers on a low-speed pursuit in the 20 MPH range after refusing to stop and proceeding to drive back onto the highway, police say.

Boone Police patrol unit damage, courtesy of the Boone Police Department

During the pursuit, Hicks reportedly drove “very erratically, intentionally veering towards motorists and pursuing officers,” a release from the Boone PD states. “At least three civilian vehicles were damaged due to Mr. Hick’s actions. One Boone Police patrol unit was intentionally rammed by Mr. Hicks, resulting in several thousand dollars of damage.”

Stop sticks were deployed successfully to flatten the tractor’s front tires. Hicks was able to continue traveling towards Parkway School, and out of concern for the safety of students, police were authorized to deflate the rear tires with rifle fire in an isolated location, the release said.

After leading police on the pursuit, Hicks reportedly turned into a private drive on Elk Creek Road and fled on foot while brandishing a knife, the release states. Officers then reportedly issued verbal commands and deployed a taser to “‘gain compliance from Hicks.”

Courtesy of the Boone Police Department

Hicks was charged with the following:

  • Felonious fleeing to elude arrest
  • Felonious assault with a deadly weapon on a government official
  • Misdemeanor driving while impaired
  • Misdemeanor resisting a public officer
  • Misdemeanor reckless driving
  • Infraction driving left of center

The tractor used in the incident was determined to be stolen and additional charges will be pending, according to police. No injuries were reported.

Hicks was placed on a $50,000 secured bond pending a March 10 court appearance.