NEW INFO: Police Say Driver Purposely Crashed Into Restaurant

Police say the man who drove his car into a Havelock restaurant Monday morning did it on purpose, apparently to gain attention from a girl he thought was inside. Police have now upgraded his charges to a felony.

Donnovan Yates of Newport was charged with two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon, injury to real property and reckless endangerment, all misdemeanors.

After consulting with the district attorney, police have also charged Yates with assault with a dangerous weapon inflicting serious injury, which is a felony.

Police say they believe Yates drove into the Bayside Restaurant on purpose, in an attempt to hurt himself. Police say Yates became upset after learning that a girl he knew was speaking with another man inside the business and that Yates hoped to gain attention from the girl.

Ironically, police say the girl was not in the restaurant when the crash occurred.

Yates is in jail on a $15,000 bond.

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Police say three people were injured Monday morning after a Ford Escort slammed into a restaurant in Havelock.

It happened around 4:00 a.m. at Bayside Restaurant on Highway 70 East.

Police say the car crashed through the building, injuring the driver and two people inside the restaurant. They say the three people were taken to CarolinaEast Medial Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

WITN spoke with the owner of the restaurant, who was there when the crash happened. He said his son was one of the injured, taken to the hospital with a gash to the head.

The Bayside will remain closed Monday. Damage is estimated in the thousands of dollars.

Police say their investigation continues and so far there have been no charges filed.

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