Pa. trooper injured during struggle with drunk ATV driver

The man grappled with troopers and fractured one of their hands during the struggle


Ed Lewis
Times Leader

FOSTER TWP., Pa. — A state police trooper suffered a fractured hand during a struggle with a West Wyoming man who crashed his all-terrain vehicle into cruiser during a pursuit late Monday night.

Jeremy Tristan Johnson, 28, of Dennison Street, was taken for a blood test after he was arrested when troopers allegedly detected an odor of an alcoholic beverage on his breath.

The injured trooper was evaluated at Lehigh Valley Hospital Hazleton.

According to the criminal complaint:

Two troopers were patrolling Freeland when they spotted Johnson and another man operating separate ATVs near Freeland Park at about 9:22 p.m.

Johnson initiated a pursuit when troopers attempted to stop him.

Johnson drove at a high rate of speed on several streets in Freeland passing through multiple stop signs and turning into on-coming traffic.

A trooper pulled along side Johnson and ordered him to stop.

Johnson slowed down and drove behind the stopped cruiser, where he accelerated and struck the front of the cruiser, causing him to overturn the ATV in the area of St. Marys Road in Foster Township, the complaint says.

Johnson ran away on foot into a wooded area along Route 940.

A trooper tackled Johnson who resisted arrest and refused to show his hands.

During the struggle, a trooper suffered a hand injury.

State police said Johnson’s driver’s license was suspended due to a prior drunken driving offense.

Johnson had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage and marijuana and displayed bloodshot eyes and had slurred speech, the complaint says.

A book bag in Johnson’s possession allegedly contained a bag of suspected marijuana, a grinder and a glass pipe with marijuana residue.

Johnson was arraigned Tuesday by District Judge David A. Barilla on charges of aggravated assault, flight to avoid apprehension, fleeing or attempting to elude police, driving under the influence, simple assault, possession of a small amount of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting arrest, reckless endangerment, accidents involving damage to attended vehicle, driving with a suspended license, and 22 total vehicle and traffic violations.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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