By James A. Jones Jr.
The Bradenton Herald
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SARASOTA, Fla. — A Sarasota Police patrol officer survived being struck head-on by a suspect in a white Mercedes, and being thrown over the vehicle while trying to apprehend a burglary suspect.
The incident occurred Monday night on Bird Key.
Sarasota police officers responded to Mourning Dove Drive on Bird Key around 2 p.m. Monday to investigate a vehicle burglary. When officers arrived, the victims said personal items were stolen from their vehicle, the Sarasota Police Department reported.
Officers discovered video evidence and their investigation revealed that a white four-door S-Series Mercedes was the suspected vehicle involved in the vehicle burglary.
Around 5 p.m. Monday, the same white Mercedes was in a neighborhood on Longboat Key. Longboat Key police responded to a vehicle stolen from a home on Fair Oaks Place. Several people were home when the vehicle was stolen, but no one was hurt, police reported.
Sarasota Police officers received another report after 9 p.m. that the white Mercedes had returned to Bird Key.
Officers placed their patrol vehicles at the entrance/exit to stop the Mercedes from leaving Bird Key.
The Sarasota Police officer who was injured anticipated the Mercedes would either try and drive onto a side street or crash into one of the parked patrol vehicles, the police report said.
“The Mercedes drove past a parked patrol car and hit the officer head-on, flipping him over the vehicle. The officer was taken to Sarasota Memorial Hospital and is now home and expected to recover fully,” the report said.
Police released video of the crash Tuesday afternoon. In the bodycam footage, the injured officer can be heard telling another that “he hit me with the car.”
Sarasota Police officers followed the Mercedes away from Bird Key as it drove east on John Ringling Causeway, north on U.S. 41, east on Fruitville, and was abandoned in the 2900 block of Orange Avenue. When officers arrived, no one was in the vehicle.
No suspect has been arrested at this time.
Anyone with information on this case is asked to call Detective Kim Laster at 941-263-6827 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366-TIPS or online at www.sarasotacrimestoppers.com.
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