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Driver accused of ‘purposely’ driving into crowded Georgia parade convicted, court records say

EFFINGHAM COUNTY, Ga, — A driver has been convicted after officials say she purposely drove into a parade route, endangering the lives of many.

On June 25, 2022, crowds were gathered for the Freedom Rings parade in Effingham County when a driver drove around a manned barricade into the parade route.

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Officers attempted to stop the vehicle, however, the driver continued around them, narrowly missing bystanders.

Investigators identified the driver as 39-year-old Anthony Rodriguez.

Authorities said Rodriguez continued down the parade route towards the Sheriff, Chief Deputy, Rincon Chief of Police and other officials.

Members of the 3rd Infantry Division Marching band were forced to dive out of the way, according to police.

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A K9 Officer used their patrol car to crash head-on into the driver to stop the vehicle, according to investigators. Police have not determined a motive.

None of the 600+ people at the parade were seriously hurt.

Emergency crews took the officer to the hospital for evaluation.

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Rodriguez was charged with seven counts of aggravated assault, two counts of fleeing/eluding a police officer, aggravated assault on a police officer and obstruction of an officer.

On Friday, Rodriguez was found guilty on all charges. Her sentencing is set for early August.

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