Video: NY police officer dragged while investigating stolen vehicle

The incident was captured on surveillance video; five other officers were injured in pursuit of the teen driver


By Maki Becker
The Buffalo News

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Six Buffalo police officers were injured late Monday night in a series of events that began with an attempt to stop a stolen vehicle in a gas station station parking lot on Bailey Avenue and Langfield Drive, Buffalo Police Capt. Jeff Rinaldo said Tuesday.

The officers stopped the vehicle about 11:20 p.m. in the parking lot of a gas station across the street from the Northeast District police station and were trying to get the occupants to get out of the car when, police said, the driver, identified as a 16-year-old, tried to drive away in reverse.

Surveillance footage of the incident can be seen in the video below.

The driver dragged Lt. Nicole Santiago with the stolen vehicle, which left her injured. The driver exited the lot and police pursued the vehicle. Police said the chase was permitted under department policy based on the injury to the lieutenant.

During the pursuit, the driver of the stolen vehicle swerved into an oncoming car and that car struck a police vehicle, Rinaldo said. Two officers in that vehicle were injured.

The chase ended near Peach and Best streets when the suspect's vehicle hit a parked car. The suspect then fled on foot and police officers ran after him, according to police. During the arrest, two more police officers and another lieutenant were injured, police said.

The 16-year-old, whose name has not been released because of his age, was charged with felony assault of a police officer, unlawfully fleeing a police officer in a vehicle, unauthorized use of a vehicle and "numerous vehicle and traffic offenses."

All six officers are assigned to the Northeast District — E District. They were all treated at a hospital for their injuries and released.

"All six officers injuries are non life threatening and they are expected to recover," Rinaldo said in a statement.

Last week, Buffalo Police Officer Jonathan Negron was severely injured in a crash and remains in critical condition at Erie County Medical Center. Negron was responding to a 911 call about a car with four people wearing masks and a gun inside. Negron pursued the vehicle through Mount Calvary Cemetery, where the vehicle crashed into a phone pole which then fell through the windshield of Negron's patrol car. The driver of that vehicle, a 16-year-old from Rochester, was charged with second-degree assault on a police officer and unlawful fleeing from a police officer in a motor vehicle.

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(c)2021 The Buffalo News (Buffalo, N.Y.)

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