An officer with the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office suffered minor injuries this past Sunday after a driver pulled over in a routine traffic stop attempted to flee while the officer’s hand was inside the vehicle. According to the official statement, Deputy William Kretzer was on duty on Sunday when he pulled over the 27-year-old LaRodney Bennett on North Center Street in Pierson after Bennett was clocked breaking the speed limit. During the procedure, Kretzer discovered two outstanding warrants for Bennett’s arrest. Kretzer exited his vehicle and approached Bennett’s car.
According to Kretzer, he requested that Bennett exit the vehicle. Bennett declined, and Kretzer asked again. This happened several times, and each time Bennett declined to leave the car. Following the last refusal, Kretzer reached inside the car’s open window in order to forcibly remove Bennett. It was while Kretzer’s arm was still within the car that Bennett began to try and drive away. Kretzer was pulled alongside the moving vehicle for 10 feet or so, after which time he let go of the fleeing man in order to prevent himself from being seriously injured. Bennett, for his part, proceeded to flee down the road.
The poorly planned escape route took Bennett along a meandering route of dirt roads and badly maintained trails. Eventually, Bennett lost control of his vehicle and collided with a tree. Unfazed, the fleeing man abandoned the car and tried to hide in some nearby bushes. Meanwhile, both a K-9 unit and a helicopter were searching the area for the running man. The combination of resources allowed the pursuing officers to capture Bennett without much trouble. After the arrest, he was subsequently transported to Florida Hospital DeLand for treatment of minor wounds, including a dog bite.
Currently, Bennett is staying at Daytona Beach’s Volusia County Branch Jail. The charges currently being leveled against him include aggravated battery against an officer of the law as well as an attempt to flee an officer after using violence to deter that officer’s pursuit. It is believed that the two initial warrants out against Bennett were related to assault charges that have yet to be resolved.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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