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Driver flees police with unrestrained children in car

LAWRENCEVILLE -- A Lawrenceville man reportedly fled from police with three unrestrained children in his car last week -- but he didn't get far.

A Gwinnett County police officer pulled over 25-year-old Richard Anthony Sasso's 1989 Honda Civic after his tag was determined to be expired, spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith said. The officer also noted three children -- later found to be 4, 4 and 3 years old -- "bouncing around" in the back seat.

As police ran Sasso's driver's license at the scene at 3500 Club Drive in Lawrenceville, the driver reportedly slammed on the gas and made a break for it. He "glanced off" a parked car and ran over a curb, Smith said.

The officer briefly gave chase on foot, but, because of safety concerns, did not pursue Sasso in his vehicle.

"With the kids being in there and not being restrained," Smith said, "it's just not something we would chase him for."

Luckily, they wouldn't have too. The officer still had Sasso's driver's license.

When police arrived at his address at 3400 Club Drive, just two-tenths of a mile down the road, they found Sasso walking outside his apartment, Smith said.

The children, two of which were Sasso's and one that was a friend's, were unharmed, Smith said.

Sasso was arrested and charged with felony fleeing from a police officer, reckless conduct, reckless driving, hit and run, expired tag, driving on a suspended license and a child safety restraint violation. Gwinnett County Jail records show he was later released on $5,205 bond.