Tacoma Police Officer Plows Through Crowd

A group of people gathered for a street race surrounded his vehicle
By Luke Roney,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 24, 2021 4:40 PM CST
Tacoma Police Officer Plows Through Crowd
At least one person was injured when a police car plowed through a crowd of people Saturday night who were watching a downtown street race.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Two people were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries after a Tacoma, Wash., police officer drove his vehicle into a crowd gathered for a street race on Saturday night, the Seattle Times reports. The unnamed officer is now under investigation by an independent police-review body. “I am concerned that our department is experiencing another use of deadly force incident,” Interim Police Chief Mike Ake said in a statement. “I send my thoughts to anyone who was injured in tonight’s event.” The officer was responding to multiple reports of people blocking a downtown intersection, per NBC News, when the crowd surrounded the police vehicle.

People began hitting the vehicle, which had its lights and sirens activated, per the police. The officer, “fearing for his safety,” attempted to back up but was unable to because of the crowd. “While trying to extricate himself from an unsafe position, the officer drove forward striking one individual and may have impacted others,” the statement says, adding that the officer then called for medical aid. One eyewitness tells the News Tribune that “a lot of people swarmed in the direction” of the police vehicle. “They were intending to block him in.” A police spokeswoman tells the paper that the officer addressed the crowd with his bullhorn and people began banging on his windows. “He was afraid they would break the glass,” she says. (Read more Tacoma stories.)

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