A Dahlonega man faces a misdemeanor charge after Hall County Sheriff’s Office deputies spotted a surplus vehicle with Hall County markings at his home, according to authorities.
Charles McElroy Turner III, 46, was charged with having markings of a law enforcement vehicle.
Deputies responded April 10 to 2200 Martins Ford Road regarding a domestic dispute, according to Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Deputy Nicole Bailes.
“When deputies arrived to address the domestic call, they encountered on the driveway a small sign that read police checkpoint ahead,” Bailes wrote in an email. “There was also a (2000) Crown Victoria vehicle that had been stripped and Hall County lettering placed on the vehicle.”
Investigators discovered the car had been purchased through GovDeals.com, where surplus vehicles are sold.
Turner said his company Corporate Auto Brokers purchased the vehicle at auction and that the car has been there for years.
“I took a marked car that we had purchased at auction and put it in my driveway to try and keep people from coming down there,” Turner said.
Bailes said all of the markings and equipment were removed when the vehicle sold at auction.
“The investigation did not reveal that Turner was using this vehicle to conduct traffic stops or engage in an official capacity,” Bailes said. “However, the markings that were added to the vehicle were not authorized.”
Turner said he did so for his own safety and cited previous safety concerns in his neighborhood, adding that he was unaware that having the car there would be against the law.
“It takes them over 20 minutes to get to my house when you dial 911,” Turner said.
Turner turned himself in to the Hall County Jail on Friday and was released on a $1,300 bond.
“The vehicle was seized until Turner could arrange to have the markings removed from the vehicle,” Bailes said.