Car Crashes, Burns Following 100 MPH Chase

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A Johnston County man who tried to outrun authorities at speeds up to 100 mph Monday afternoon has been arrested. Around 3:15 p.m., a Johnston County Sheriff’s Office deputy was leaving the campus of West Johnston High School on Raleigh Road when they spotted a car speeding in the school zone on Raleigh Road in front of the campus.

The deputy attempted to stop the car, being driven by a man later identified as James Willis Mooney, 44, of Four Oaks, who tried to elude the officer by passing several other vehicles.

The chase eventually reached speeds of 100 mph on N.C. 210 traveling toward Smithfield.

As Mr. Mooney attempted to turn into the Sheffield Woods Sub- See Crash, Page 3

Mooney Crash

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and Fire and Rescue Departments, Harnett County Emergency Services, the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office and Dunn Emergency Services responded to the scene.

His arrangements are being handled by O’Quinn-Peebles-Phillips Funeral Home in Lillington.

Mr. Ruckers, a husband, father and grandfather, was a U.S Army veteran and also a retired construction worker. He reportedly enjoyed riding motorcycles and loved his dogs. He was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed cutting trails for his four-wheeler.

Tuesday’s accident marks the third time the Erwin Police Department has been involved in a major case and the second fatality since Monday. One man died at an Erwin business Monday when a forklift fell on him. The death was determined to be accidental, but the North Carolina Department of Labor and OSHA are conducting further investigations.

Erwin Police are also investigating a meth lab found in a barn behind the home at 303 S.18th St. Tuesday.

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