Watch: Suspect flees Wyandotte police with officer hanging on car
A Wyandotte police officer is recovering after a suspect trying to flee an arrest this week sped off with him hanging on the car, investigators said.
Authorities released body camera footage from the incident that started around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, when a man being investigated for drug-related crimes delivered "a substantial amount of crack cocaine to an undercover officer" on Chestnut Street, said Deputy Chief Archie Hamilton.
As the man sat in a black Dodge Charger in a parking lot, other police officers rushed in to surround him with their patrol cars; one pulled up behind and another was in front, Hamilton said.
One of the officers left his car, approached the Charger and ordered the driver out, but the man refused and starting backing up, hitting one of the vehicles, Hamilton said.
Body camera footage shows the officer opening the driver's door as the man accelerates. He was trapped between the frame and door as the driver sped off, Hamilton said.
The officer was dragged for several hundred feet before being hurled to the pavement, the deputy chief said. The suspect had been "inches away from crushing the officer between the car and a large trash container."
The officer, a 22-year veteran on the department, was hospitalized with extensive injuries to his arms, back and legs, Hamilton said. He has since been released and is "going to make a full recovery," Hamilton said. "He’s in good spirits."
After the officer fell, another colleague pursued the Charger about a mile west on Oak, near 20th Street, where the driver lost control, struck a vehicle, rolled over then eventually crashed into the front porch of a house, Hamilton said.
More body cam footage showed the other officer rushing to find the car's smoldering wreckage in the yard, then running after the suspect, who dashed through a nearby parking lot.
The suspect, identified as a 34-year-old Detroit man, was eventually arrested after the officer used a Taser, Hamilton said.
The man remained in jail Thursday night. The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office was expected to authorize charges.
The driver of the second car he struck during the pursuit reported minor injuries, Hamilton said.
"The officers did an outstanding job," he said. "I'm extremely proud ... This video illustrates the work they really do."