Suspect Tried to Crash Head On into Patrol Car, New Port Richey Police Say
A woman was injured in a crash that happened during the pursuit, New Port Richey police said.
NEW PORT RICHEY – A man was accused of trying to ram a New Port Richey police officer head while he was running from officers, according to the New Port Richey Police Department.
Lionel Bates, 27, was charged with one count each of aggravated fleeing to elude, aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, armed trafficking in cocaine (powder and rock), possession of marijuana, possession of cannabis oil, felon in possession of a firearm and felon in possession of ammunition. He was also charged with three counts of armed trafficking of a controlled substance and four counts of possession of a controlled substance.
Police said they expect the Florida Highway Patrol, which is investigating a traffic crash that happened during the pursuit, to file additional charges.
New Port Richey police Officer Berge tried to make a traffic stop on a 2015 Range Rover for dark tinted windows about 7:53p.m. Tuesday (March 28) on Louisiana Avenue near Madison Street.
When Berge turned on his lights, he said the Range rover accelerated east on Louisiana Avenue at a high rate of speed. Officer Valente was in the westbound lane of Louisiana Avenue in his marked patrol car. Officers said the Range Rover came into the westbound lane, with no other traffic around, to try crashing head on into Valente’s patrol car. Valente drove off the road to avoid being hit.
The Range Rover continued east on Louisiana Avenue approaching Carob Drive, which is a T-Intersection. The Range Rover continued east through the intersection and hit a bollard in the front yard of 6730 Carob Drive. The Range Rover then struck a grey Toyota SUV in the driveway of the home as the residents were trying to get in their car. Police said a woman resident received non-life-threatening injuries in the crash.
Bates, who was driving the Range Rover and was its only occupant, fled the scene on foot. Police said they caught him a short distance away. Officers said they found the drugs, handgun and $1,150 in cash.
The FHP, which was called to investigate the crash, found the Range Rover had been listed stolen out of North Carolina since February of 2015.
For information about New Port Richey police, go to cityofnewportrichey.org.
New Port Richey Police | Florida Highway Patrol | Crime | Arrests | TB Reporter
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