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On December 5, 2019, Madison County deputies arrested then-forty-nine-year-old Argie Pruitt of Jackson, Tennessee, and charged him with multiple felonies after he fled from a traffic stop and led law enforcement on a high-speed pursuit. Pruitt evaded arrest and struck a Jackson Police Department (“JPD”) patrol vehicle before wrecking near North Fairgrounds Street where deputies took him into custody. Deputies located approximately twelve (12) grams of crack cocaine inside the vehicle Pruitt had been driving.

Later that same day, investigators with the Jackson Metro Narcotics unit executed a search warrant on Pruitt’s home in Jackson where they located approximately thirty (30) additional grams of cocaine as well as digital scales and other drug paraphernalia.

On March 2 and June 29, 2020, the Madison County Grand Jury indicted Pruitt separately for the two different December 5, 2019 crimes. In the first indictment, the grand jury charged him with Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Sell and/or Deliver, two (2) counts of Felony Evading Arrest, Evading Arrest, Reckless Endangerment with a Deadly Weapon, and Driving on a Revoked License (prior offender). The second indictment charged Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Sell and/or Deliver, Possession of Marijuana, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

At the time of his arrest, Pruitt was a career offender with an extensive criminal history that included prior convictions for Aggravated Kidnapping, Aggravated Robbery, Aggravated Assault, and Burglary (two separate incidents) in 1989; Aggravated Kidnapping (three separate counts), Aggravated Robbery (two separate counts), Attempted Aggravated Robbery, Escape, Theft Over $1,000, and Reckless Endangerment with a Deadly Weapon in 1990; and Felony Evading Arrest, Reckless Endangerment with a Deadly Weapon, and Possession of Schedule II and III Drugs with Intent to Sell and/or Deliver in 2012.

Pruitt posted bail on his initial charges but was again arrested by JPD on September 8, 2022, when, during another traffic stop, he fled by motor vehicle. When officers took Pruitt into custody, he had approximately seventy (70) grams of crack cocaine in his possession. On motion of the State, the Court revoked Pruitt’s bond, and he was held without bail pending trial.

On April 3, 2023, the Madison County Grand Jury indicted Pruitt for Possession of Cocaine and Marijuana with Intent to Sell and/or Deliver, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Introduction of Contraband in a Penal Facility, Felony Evading Arrest, Driving on a Revoked License with Prior Convictions, and Simple Possession of Suboxone, all stemming from the September 2022 traffic stop and pursuit.

On April 1, 2024, Pruitt pled guilty and received an effective forty-seven-year sentence to serve in the Tennessee Department of Correction. The court sentenced Pruitt to consecutive sentences of twenty-four (24) years for the December 5, 2019 offenses and twenty-three (23) years for the September 8, 2022 offenses. Consecutive sentencing was required as a matter of law since he committed at least one felony while on bond for another felony.

“This Defendant has frequently and repeatedly been sent to prison,” said District Attorney General Jody Pickens. “Unfortunately, he never used his time in prison to learn how to lead a productive life. Instead, each time he was paroled he continued to endanger the public and law enforcement officers by committing crimes such as drug trafficking and evading arrest by motor vehicle. It would have been better for all involved, especially Mr. Pruitt, if he had chosen to lead a law-abiding life, but it is clear that he refused to do so. Now, at least, his career as a criminal in Madison County is over due to the work of my office, specifically Assistant District Attorneys General Bradley Champine and Justin Prescott, and the members of the Jackson Police Department as well as Metro Narcotics.”

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