Stand-up act while driving lands Grass Valley man in jail |

Stand-up act while driving lands Grass Valley man in jail

Jordan Tanksley

A 24-year-old Grass Valley man with a beef against law enforcement ended up in jail after his protest went awry Friday morning.

Just before 10 a.m., Grass Valley Police officers were advised by emergency dispatchers that a vehicle had just collided with the back fence of the department, said Sgt. Brian Blakemore. Witnesses then reported the driver was trying to flee.

“We ran out of the office and contacted the driver,” Blakemore said, adding the car had become disabled about 50 yards away, on the corner of Bank and Stewart streets.

The driver, identified as Jordan Edward Tanksley, was told by officers to leave his vehicle and get out of the roadway but failed to comply, Blakemore said.

Tanksley reportedly struggled with officers who were trying to handcuff him, but was eventually taken into custody. No one was injured during the altercation, Blakemore said.

After Tanksley was evaluated for driving under the influence, he was found to be under the influence of prescription medications. According to Blakemore, he admitted to having ingested quadruple the recommended dosage of his anti-anxiety medication.

“He said he had been out driving around, because he doesn’t like law enforcement,” Blakemore said. “He wanted to find law enforcement and tell us to leave him alone.”

Tanksley reportedly decided to drive down Stewart Street behind the police department, and stood up on the driver’s seat of his four-door Infiniti sedan so he could yell over the fence. Tanksley then allegedly lost control of the car and hit a concrete pole.

“We have surveillance video that shows him with his head and then his left arm out of the sunroof, gesturing,” Blakemore said. “He was ‘communicating.’”

Even though, as Blakemore noted, Grass Valley has had “very minimal” contact with Tanksley, “it was his intent and desire to let us know of his dislike of law enforcement. Mission accomplished.”

Tanksley was booked on suspicion of hit-and-run driving, driving under the influence of a drug and resisting arrest. He was being held in county jail in lieu of $11,500 bail.

“I don’t know how he believed he would be able to steer the vehicle,” Blakemore said, adding that Tanksley admitted it probably had been an ill-advised plan.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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