Home News UPDATE – Man Who Jumped Into Deer Creek to Escape Pickaway Deputy...

UPDATE – Man Who Jumped Into Deer Creek to Escape Pickaway Deputy Arrested


PICKAWAY – On May 11, 2024, a police chase ensued near Darbyville after approximately 20 motorcycles, dirt bikes, and four-wheelers were reported to be performing stunts and obstructing traffic on SR-316 West. The incident, which unfolded around 3:35 PM near Dennis Road, prompted law enforcement intervention.

According to the responding officer, upon arriving at the scene, he encountered a group of vehicles blocking the roadway. Attempting to stop the vehicles, Deputy Collins activated his lights and sirens, but the riders refused to comply, accelerating away from the scene. Despite the Deputies efforts, the vehicles continued westbound on SR-316, eventually turning onto Five Points Pike.

The pursuit continued as the vehicles proceeded southbound on Five Points Pike and then westbound on Hall Road. The Deputy managed to run several license plates during the chase, identifying one motorcycle with an active warrant.

The chase reached its climax when the group turned onto Yankeetown Pike and entered the spillway entrance to Deer Creek Dam. Collins, along with officers from the Ohio State Highway Patrol (OHSP), moved to intercept the riders. Upon approaching a white Suzuki motorcycle believed to have an active warrant, the rider, later identified as Henry Joel Melendez Prestol, attempted to flee.

Prestol abandoned his motorcycle and fled on foot, ultimately jumping into the spillway with running water. OHSP officers managed to apprehend Prestol on the other side of the spillway, holding him at taser point until The Deputy could assist in the arrest.

Following his arrest, Prestol was charged with driving under suspension, expired registration, failure to comply with a peace officer’s orders, and resisting arrest. Despite being taken into custody, Prestol refused to disclose any information about his associates. He was subsequently transported to the Pickaway County Jail without further incident.