CHICOPEE, Mass (WGGB) — One police officer was hurt, two cruisers are heavily damaged, and two people are in custody as part of a wild evening chase through Chicopee. Police say narcotics detectives were trying to stop a woman who they believed had an outstanding warrant near Ray Ashe Park around 5PM Wednesday. Instead of complying, she jumped into the passenger seat of a nearby car.
“The operator of that vehicle then attempted to run over one of our narcotics officers,” Public Information Officer Michael Wilk said.
The chase began from there, criss-crossing through major city streets. The driver allegedly hit another one innocent bystander’s car and also just missed striking passerby Gary King’s vehicle.
“He was zig-zagging by the Shell Station near East Main and he came back out on Broadway and then he just took the straightaway and he was flying,” he said.
Smoking car and all, the driver continued up Broadway Avenue and cut off an ABC40 crew as he wrecklessly pulled from Broadway Avenue onto Smith Street.
“I thought ‘Oh my God’ what’s going on?” one witness said.
That street is a dead end, so ABC40 watched the driver run across the street into several yards. As for the woman in the passenger seat who the incident originally began with:
“She couldn’t get out of that car fast enough,” one witness said. “I don’t think it was even all the way stopped.”
She was arrested by officers and so was the driver in an adjacaent neighborhood. As the chase ended, two Chicopee cruisers crashed on Broadway Avenue. One officer suffered minor injuries.
At rush hour with many kids out of school on a warm afternoon, witnesses say the driver put many people in danger.
“I have my daughter here, she’s nine years old,” King said. “Couple other kids live across the street. I mean if he lost control it would just be awful.”
Chicopee Police stress public safety is the main priority in chases. They had officers working to clear streets and intersections during the incident.
“Pursuits are always dangerous and in a case like this when you have someone who attempts to run down an officer you don’t know what else they are capable of,” Wilk said.
The woman will face at least her warrant charges. The driver is facing several felonies and charges include assault and battery on an officer, leaving the scene of a personal injury accident, and others. The names of the suspects will be released Thursday.
The civilian driver he hit suffered minor injuries.