Man arrested after 60-foot fall from JFX

Suspect jumped rather than face police custody

August 19, 2005|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,SUN STAFF

A man suspected of drug activity was injured yesterday after leaping over a Jones Falls Expressway retaining wall near Cold Spring Lane to avoid arrest and landing in the falls some 60 feet below the highway, authorities said.

The suspect - described as conscious and alert - was pulled from the water by firefighters reaching the site from Clipper Mill Road, said Chief Kevin Cartwright, a city Fire Department spokesman.

The unidentified man was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center, as was an unnamed police officer who sustained a shoulder injury in the incident, according to preliminary accounts.

Officer Troy Harris, a police spokesman, said the incident began about 4:20 p.m. when members of the Organized Crime Division witnessed drug activity between two people at an undisclosed location.

The officers followed one man as he drove onto the northbound lanes of the expressway, and pulled him over near Cold Spring Lane, Harris said.

The subject got out of the car and assaulted the police, Harris said. "Rather than be arrested, he jumped over the wall and fell about 60 feet into the Jones Falls," Harris said, adding that drugs were found in the car.

Expressway traffic in both directions was halted or detoured for more than an hour as police and firefighters worked to remove the man from the water. Traffic was backed up in the area for much of the late-afternoon rush.

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