Tacoma, Washington police are investigating a situation that developed when an officer accidentally ran over a man who was lying in the street, leaving him in critical condition.
According to reports, an officer was riding around a Tacoma neighborhood on patrol after a string of recent car break-ins, and although he was only driving 10mph, he managed to run over the man, 22-year-old Emanuel Andrade, who happened to be lying in the street.
“[The officer] was driving very slowly, and he stopped a couple of times to run plates and he was looking at the (patrol car's computer) screen,” said Tacoma Police Department spokeswoman Loretta Cool. “He was looking out in between the cars.”
Andrade was apparently wearing dark clothing, so even though the officer of seven years was trying to be careful, he didn’t see the now injured pedestrian. Reports say that Andrade is seen walking to his car, exiting a few minutes later, and lying down in the street. Luckily, a neighbor’s surveillance camera caught the incident, which shows clearly that the officer didn’t see the man.
“Looked to me kind of like it was both parties’ fault, where it was just an unfortunate incident, where maybe a young man was just partying too much without a friend to help him,” said Kassie Mitchell, the woman who caught the incident on camera.
Another witness says that he thought the officer was going to get out and cite Andrade for being drunk, but instead of stopping, he kept driving until he ran the pedestrian over.
“He continued up the road real slowly. When his headlights hit the concrete up there, I noticed there was somebody up there laying in the road,” said Duane Marggraf. “I thought he was going to get out and give him a citation for being drunk in public or something like that. But he continued on and ran him over, just like watching a movie.”
The officer will not be reprimanded for the accident, and Andrade is still in the hospital in critical condition.