HAWTHORNE — A motorist is being charged with attempted murder after driving off at high speed as a Westchester County police officer was attempting to take him into custody this morning.
The officer was trying to get the driver out of a Honda Accord at 11:30 a.m. and was leaning inside the car when it took off. The officer was able to climb inside to avoid dragging and struggled with the suspect as the vehicle hit speeds of nearly 60 miles per hour.
The front door of the car remained open during the incident. The driver swerved across both lanes of the Hutchinson River Parkway and on to the shoulder, accelerating and breaking hard to try and jolt the officer out of the car.
This continued for three-quarters of a miles until the officer was able to get the car to a stop. The suspect’s vehicle was then boxed in by a county police car as the driver attempted to get away.
“The actions of this driver put our officer in grave danger,” Westchester Police Commissioner Thomas A. Gleason said. “It is fortunate that he was not seriously injured or killed.”
The whole incident got started when the officer pulled over the suspect for a traffic violation. The officer determined the driver didn’t have a valid license and asked the suspect to get out of the car. The driver initially complied before jumping back into the Honda.
Following the incident, the Honda was impounded and towed back to police headquarters. There they discovered 9,000 glassine envelopes of heroin inside the car.
The suspect is believed to be a man in his 20s from Massachusetts, but his identity is still being verified. Multiple felony charges are pending, including attempted murder of a police officer, assault and criminal possession of a controlled substance. He was taken to the Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, where he was treated and released.
The county officer, who is not being identified as of this time, was taken to Phelps Memorial Hospital in Sleepy Hollow with an injury to his arm and one of his hands. He was also treated and released.