- A police car drove into a crowd of pedestrians watching an illegal street race in Washington on Saturday.
- The incident, which left one person seriously injured, was captured on social media.
- Tacoma police said the officer had feared for his life after the crowd started banging on the car’s windows.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
One person was left seriously injured after a police car suddenly plowed through a crowd of pedestrians watching an illegal street race in downtown Tacoma, Washington, on Saturday night.
The incident was captured in a 48-second video, which has since been widely shared on social media.
In the clip, a Tacoma police car can be seen surrounded by a group of people shouting and holding up their cameras.
The car revs its engine and surges forward, driving into the crowd and running over several people before driving away.
Watch the moment below:
—Jason Gauthier (@jasonjgauthier) January 24, 2021
According to an eye witness, who identified himself to The News Tribune only as Mark, authorities tried to break apart the illegal street race taking place in a large intersection in downtown Tacoma.
First, a large fire truck attempted to block the intersection where five to six cars were spinning in circles, but the crowds of about three dozen were able to reform in a different area.
This is what prompted a Tacoma police car to approach the crowd.
“A lot of people swarmed in that direction (of the police car),” Mark told The News Tribune. “They were intending to block him.”
Tacoma police spokeswoman Wendy Haddow said the officer had become scared after the crowd started pounding on his windows.
“He was afraid they would break his glass,” Hallow said, according to the Tribune.
Hallow added that the officer had attempted to use the car’s bullhorn to address the crowd but ignored him, which prompted him to speed away.
In a statement released on Saturday evening, Tacoma Police wrote: “During the operation, a responding Tacoma police vehicle was surrounded by the crowd. People hit the body of the police vehicle and its windows as the officer was stopped in the street.
“The officer, fearing for his safety, tried to back up, but was unable to do so because of the crowd. The officer had his lights and sirens activated,” the statement continued. “While trying to extricate himself from an unsafe position, the officer drove forward striking one individual and may have impacted others. The officer stopped at a point of safety and called for medical aid.”
One person was seriously injured and had to be transported to a nearby hospital. The person’s condition is not known.
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