Police officer, two bystanders hurt in pursuit of stolen automobile

August 13, 1999|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A Baltimore police officer and two civilians were injured yesterday when officers tried to stop a man in a stolen car and were led on a pursuit that ended after a series of crashes.

Police said the incident began shortly after noon when members of the Regional Auto Theft Team staked out a 1999 Oldsmobile Alero parked at West Cold Spring Lane and Park Heights Avenue. The car was reported stolen July 5 from National Rental Car Co. at Baltimore-Washington International Airport.

When a man tried to drive off, police quickly surrounded the car.

Agent Ragina L. Cooper, a police spokeswoman, said the man drove forward and hit a Chevrolet Cavalier, then backed into and rammed the front of a marked police Jeep several times.

Cooper said the driver got by police cars, hit a tree, crossed the front lawn of a house and sped south on Greenspring Avenue. At Druid Park Drive, the Oldsmobile hit a marked police car and three other vehicles, including a pickup truck and a van, before coming to a stop, Cooper said.

Northern District Officer Michael Finkleman was treated for minor injuries at Maryland Shock Trauma Center. A man was treated at Sinai Hospital for minor injuries, and a bystander who rushed to help him suffered chest pain and also was treated at Sinai.

Matthew Crawford, 35, of the 2400 block of Etting St. was charged with four counts of attempted murder and one count of auto theft, police said.

Pub Date: 8/13/99

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