Ohio SWAT sniper shoots and disables engine of semi-truck, ending pursuit

The driver of a semi-truck at times swerved into police vehicles, drove backwards and traveled in the wrong direction

By Suzie Ziegler 

CINCINNATI — A high-speed pursuit involving a semi-truck ended after a SWAT sniper shot and disabled the tractor trailer’s engine.

According to The Enquirer, the series of events began just before 1 p.m. Saturday when reports of a reckless driver reached Butler County law enforcement. As officers tried to initiate a traffic stop the semi-truck trailer fled towards Cincinnati. 

Assistant Chief Paul Neudigate said police believed the event began as a domestic violence incident after learning the driver’s wife was being held hostage inside the vehicle, and that the driver had threatened to harm her with a knife or firearm. The woman was released at some point during the pursuit and possibly suffered a broken leg, according to The Enquirer. 

The pursuit lasted for nearly three hours. The driver threatened to shoot at officers multiple times and swerved at police who deployed stop sticks, Neudigate told reporters. Around 3 p.m. the driver unhooked the trailer from the truck and continued the pursuit. Neudigate said the man drove in reverse at high speeds multiple times toward officers. At one point the semi-truck drove the wrong direction on the highway.

That's when a SWAT sniper shot the truck with a .50 caliber rifle and disabled its engine. Neudigate said the man's wife had already been released and the highway was closed at that time, according to The Enquirer. The driver then held himself at knifepoint as police approached and refused to escalate, Neudigate said. Officers used a TASER and foam baton to take him into custody. He suffered minor injuries.

Officers aren’t sure how the man acquired the semi-truck. They believe he may have an active aggravated assault warrant out of Georgia, according to The Enquirer. 


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