FLORENCE– A man from Brilliant, Alabama, is facing manslaughter charges following a pursuit by the Florence Police Department.

Zachery John Madden, 21, was charged after he failed to stop for police who were attempting to investigate the vehicle Madden was driving after it was observed travelling in downtown Florence without headlights.

The initial stop was initiated shortly after 1 am Saturday morning in the area of Court Street.

Madden refused to yield to police and led officers on a pursuit through downtown Florence which eventually ended after Madden crashed his vehicle through a locked gate near the intersection of West College Street and West Mobile Street.

Madden’s vehicle travelled through a residential area after crashing through the gate before submerging into Cypress Creek.

Officers observed Madden and a second white male exit the vehicle into the creek. Madden swam to officers while the second male swam to the opposite side of the creek before disappearing into a wooded area. Madden was taken into custody without incident and informed officers of a third person who was in the vehicle at the time of the crash.

Members of the Florence Police Department Water Rescue and Recovery Team responded to the scene and located Joe Dewayne Cothrum, 35, deceased inside the vehicle. The third caucasian male has not yet been identified or located.

Troopers were called to the scene and are providing investigative assistance to the Florence Police Department.

Police say the case is still very active and ongoing.

Madden was transported to the Lauderdale County Detention Center where he awaits bond. Additional charges are pending in this case.

Comments are closed.