A chase between an SUV and police vehicles ended in an officer being struck in front of Johnson and Hardwick residence halls around 8:43 p.m. last night, Nov. 14.
The Philadelphia Police Narcotics Strike Force was pursuing the vehicle north on Broad Street and west on Norris Street until the vehicle crashed into a parked car around the corner on the 1400 block of Diamond Street, said Charles Leone, deputy director of Campus Safety Services, in an email. The pursuit may have started a few blocks south of Main Campus, he added.
Andrea Bedford, junior international business major, was walking home from the library with her roommate when the chase broke out.
“We were crossing Carlisle and all of a sudden we hear all the sirens. There were more than five cop cars chasing this big, black SUV. It turned right toward us and we had to jump off the street onto the curb. My roommate was literally about three feet from the [SUV.] It was so close and going so fast,” Bedford said.
After the SUV continued to race down Carlisle Street it was cut off by a police vehicle at Diamond Street and forced toward Broad Street where it crashed into a parked car.
“It looked like the whole police force was there,” Bedford said.
Two males ran from the vehicle, and one was apprehended on Diamond Street by a responding Temple police officer who injured his hand, Leone said. The officer was treated at Temple University Hospital and released with a minor hand injury.
Bedford described the arrested suspect as a 6-foot tall, African American male weighing at least 200 pounds.
The other suspect, a male, continued running toward Johnson and Hardwick residence halls, trailed closely by nearly 10 police officers.
At that point, a Philadelphia police officer in foot pursuit of the suspect was struck by a police vehicle, Leone said.
“It was so loud, it sounded like gun shots,” said Keghan Crossland, a freshman film and media arts major. “He stayed on the hood of the car moaning for a few minutes.”
The narcotics officers continued chasing the suspect and quickly apprehended him.
“They tackled him right by that tree in front of Johnson,” Crossland said, pointing toward the residence hall. “The guy tried to kick and punch. The cops had to beat him up a bit.”
The struck officer was transported to TUH, sustaining injuries to his leg and finger.
Broad Street was closed between Norris and Diamond streets, while police processed the scene.
There was no threat to the university community since the suspects were immediately arrested, Leone said.
“It’s just part of life,” Bedford said. “You can’t go to Temple and be afraid of that kind of stuff because it’s going to happen…it doesn’t change my opinion of Temple.”
Becky Kerner can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.