Florida sheriff’s department describe arresting Helena man wanted for double murder

Published: Jan. 24, 2022 at 10:45 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - John Peyton Scott III, the man wanted in a double murder in Helena, has been arrested in St. Augustine, Florida.

Scott was captured more than 400 miles away by the St. John’s County Sherriff’s Department. Officials with the department said he was near a busy truck stop, Buc-ee’s, about to hit Interstate- 95 when he was spotted.

Sheriff Robert Hardwick said it was around 2:30 p.m. when a deputy was on patrol near International Gulf Parkway and the busy Interstate 95 and saw a car that matched Shelby County’s description. It was the Red 2020 Ford Eco Sport. Hardwick said the area he was spotted is congested with traffic, with almost 100,000 vehicles passing through daily.

Hardwick said the arrest is thanks to good old fashion police work. He said Deputy Christopher James recognized the red car and got behind it. Then, he ran the plates and that ‘s when he knew it was Scott.

Hardwick said Deputy James called for a K-9 apprehension unit for back up and both officers attempted to pull Scott over, but he kept driving.

That’s when Hardwick said his two deputies performed a PIT maneuver together and released the K-9. This move forced Scott to lose control of the car and then he surrendered to police arrest.

“You hit the bumper of the car,” Hardwick said. “Then, we actually drive through the car, so once the car gets into a swaying motion, our deputy basically steps on the gas and pushes the car into a spinning rotation of the car basically. A controlled rotation of the car and that stops it from moving in the direction of travel. This kind of throws the driver off, because the vehicles goes into a rotation and can’t be controlled or steered by the driver of the car.”

Hardwick said deputies did a quick search of Scott’s car before they sealed the evidence. He said they are saving it for Shelby County and Helena Police Investigators, who are heading down to the department tonight.

“Just a fantastic job by our deputy sheriffs. This was good old fashioned police work,” Hardwick said. “Just good police work, I’m telling you.”

John Peyton Scott III was arrested and booked into the St. Johns County Jail.

“Our heart goes out to the [victim’s] family,” Hardwick said. “But, we are just glad they can sleep tonight knowing that the suspect is in the custody at the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office.”

Officials said he is expected to begin the process to extradite him back to Alabama on January 25th.


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