CRIME

James A. Howard attacks Maryland state trooper on Capital Beltway

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(AP, ABC7) - A Maryland State Police have obtained an arrest warrant charging a Prince George's County man with assaulting a trooper who responded after the man crashed on the Capital Beltway.

Police announced late Saturday that 54-year-old James Howard of Hyattsville is charged with assault, second-degree assault on an officer and trying to disarm an officer. Howard was under police guard at Fort Washington Hospital and is expected to be served with the warrant when he is released.

Authorities say that the Maryland State Police Forestville Barrack received a call from a person, later identified as Howard, who said he was involved in an accident on the Beltway near I-295.

When officers arrived, Howard approached the responding trooper, Byron Tribue, who asked Howard if was injured. As he turned around in his cruiser, the suspect pulled a 7-inch knife and began to attack the trooper through an open driver's side window.

Tribue was unable to open the door or radio for help, but a citizen stopped and jumped on the Howard's back. Shortly thereafter, more state troopers and Prince George's County Police officers arrived on the scene and subdued the suspect.

Investigators think Howard may have started the attack to encourage the trooper to use deadly force against him.

An investigation indicated that Howard's vehicle had struck the guardrail. The trooper was treated for a wound to the hand and released.

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