DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - DeKalb police say a man has been arrested for fleeing from a traffic stop that led to a 31-year-old officer fatally hitting a tree after the pursuit.
Gregory Lee Harvey Jr., 27, faces several charges, including felony murder, misdemeanor reckless driving and felony theft by receiving motor vehicle, police said.
DeKalb Officer Ivorie Klusmann, a father of two children, died when his patrol car ran off the road into a tree near DeKalb Medical Parkway and Heritage Trail Saturday at about 2:45 a.m.
Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach attended a news conference at DeKalb County Police Department Headquarters. DeKalb County Police Chief Cedric Alexander spoke about the loss of the officer who was "well-respected by his peers."
Alexander said Klausmann had pulled over the driver, who police later identified as Harvey, during a traffic stop. Klausmann took Harvey's information and went back to his patrol car. That's when the driver fled the scene.
Klausmann pursued Harvey for a short distance until the chase was called off by a supervisor. Moments later, another police officer in the area notified dispatchers that he spotted Harvey.
"Officer Klusmann heard that and headed in that direction and of course was on DeKalb Medical Parkway when this traffic accident occurred," Alexander said.
Gehlbach went to the crash scene where the impact stripped the bark right off the tree he crashed into. Police said the crash killed Klusmann instantly.
Police had earlier vowed to find the driver for fleeing from the traffic stop.
"We're going to pursue this right to the end. We won't stop," Alexander said.
Police said Harvey turned himself in at his Stone Mountain home. The investigation determined he was driving a stolen Jeep Cherokee. The vehicle, which police said was stolen out of Henry County, was found in Rockdale County.
Meanwhile, police are struggling to cope with the loss of their beloved colleague.
"This is very hurtful and very difficult for us as police department and a community," said Alexander.
Klausmann had been with the DeKalb County Police Department since October 2012 and worked in the East Precinct. He graduated from the police academy last April.
The investigation continues in this case.