A Dalton man was arrested for going too far to snag a date when he handcuffed a co-worker to his wrist in the parking lot of the Ringgold Taco Bell.
When police found 24-year-old Jason Dean on Wednesday, he still had the handcuffs with him, said Ringgold Police Chief Dan Bilbrey. Dean was jailed in Catoosa County on felony charges of false imprisonment, Bilbrey said.
He said Dean had spent weeks trying to date an 18-year-old Taco Bell co-worker, bragging that he was a Dalton volunteer firefighter. The woman refused to go out with him and Taco Bell managers had changed her shift to keep Dean away.
That didn't stop him from sending her text messages, an incident report shows.
The woman was leaving after her shift Monday night when Dean walked to her car and slapped a handcuff on her wrist, the report states. The other cuff was on his own arm.
The woman screamed and co-workers ran outside and tried to talk Dean into letting her go, but he said he just wanted to talk.
But when the co-workers called police, Dean uncuffed the woman and fled, the report states.
This isn't the first time Dean has spooked someone, officials said.
Whitfield County sheriff's detectives opened an investigation against Dean after someone complained that he tried to contact an underage teenager online, but no charges were ever filed, Capt. Rick Swiney said.
Officials said Dean never was a volunteer firefighter in Dalton or in Ellijay, which he also had claimed.
He applied for a job with the Whitfield County Fire Department six months ago, but he wasn't considered a viable candidate, Chief Carl Collins said.
About four years ago, Dean worked at a Gilmer County fire station, but he never got his certification, said Assistant Chief Ben Daniel.
Dean was fired after he was found installing a fire station radio in his car and putting red lights on top, Daniel said, but no charges were filed.
Later, Dean applied as a volunteer firefighter in Murray County, but officials called the Gilmer County department for references and were told what had happened there, Daniel said.
Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...