SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) — Sarasota police are searching for the driver who was caught on camera striking an officer with a fleeing vehicle Monday evening.
According to the department, officers were staging a roadblock on Bird Key around 9 p.m. in reference to a reported stolen vehicle.
The officers waiting at the entrance learned a white Mercedes S-Class was heading their way. It blew past a parked car and slammed into an officer, sending him flying into the air, security camera footage of the incident showed.
“The officer who was hurt anticipated the Mercedes would try to drive onto a side street or strike one of the patrol vehicles,” Police Chief Rex Troche said.
The officer was rushed to Sarasota Memorial Hospital where he was later discharged. The officer, whose name was not revealed, is expected to make a full recovery.
“Thankfully, he will recover from his injuries,” Troche added, “however, this incident could have ended with our agency making funeral arrangements.”
The Mercedes was originally reported stolen from a home on Longboat Key around 5 p.m. Four hours later, officers said the car returned to Bird Key where officers tried to stop it.
Following the pursuit, officers said the vehicle was found abandoned in the 2800 block of Orange Avenue.
Troche said the security camera footage captured from a nearby guard tower will be “instrumental into solving this case.”
Anyone with information regarding the incident 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 on the Sarasota Crime Stoppers website.