Summit County deputy injured during pursuit
A Summit County Sheriff’s deputy suffered minor injuries Tuesday night after an intoxicated driver resisted arrest and ran over his foot while attempting to flee.
Deputies were using their patrol cars to prevent the driver, Alexandria Schweiger, from leaving a parking lot near the Pinebrook neighborhood when her car lurched forward striking the patrol cars and then reversed making contact with the deputy’s foot.
According to Detective Kacey Bates, with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, the deputy was treated for his injuries and later released. Bates did not release the deputy’s name.
Schweiger, 25, of Summit County, was arrested and preliminarily charged with driving under the influence, aggravated assault and evading. As of Thursday afternoon, Schweiger was no longer in custody.
Driving under the influence is a Class B misdemeanor unless the driver has "inflicted bodily injury upon another as a proximate result of having operated the vehicle in a negligent manner," in which case the charge is elevated to a Class A misdemeanor. A Class A misdemeanor is punishable upon conviction by up to one year in jail and a $2,500 fine.
At around 11 p.m. Tuesday night, deputies were responding to an alarm at Fresh Market on Kilby Road near the entrance of the Pinebrook neighborhood when an employee reported a suspicious person who smelled like alcohol, Bates said.
After Schweiger’s car made contact with deputy, she had to be forcefully removed from the car before be placed on the ground and under arrest. Bates said the woman did not sustain any injuries.
"Use of force comes from us placing our hands on someone due to them failing to comply with what we are asking them to do," Bates said. "In this situation she was obviously harmful to herself and others so at this point they removed her from the car.
"The deputy involved could have been seriously injured and he was in immediate danger of bodily harm from the vehicle," Bates said.
An administrative review will be conducted to determine whether the use of force was necessary, Bates said. Few deputies have body cameras, however, most patrol cars are equipped with cameras. Bates was unaware if the deputies involved were wearing cameras at the time.
Bates said it is her understanding that the deputies were responding to the actions of the suspect, however, a review is ongoing.
The use of force is "not a common occurrence" within the department, Bates said.
"Obviously this happens within our job and our duties, though it is not every day," Bates said. "But when the situation presents itself we are trained to use the appropriate use of force if necessary. It’s very situational. As a police officer you have to take everything into consideration and it’s a split second decision and you do what you believe is best in that situation."
Meredith Reed was elected to a two-year term as chair of the Summit County Democratic Party and said she sees an opportunity to ride the so-called blue wave that saw a Democratic surge nationally and within the state.