CRIME

Man arrested after hitting cop, stealing police car on I-66

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(Photo: Brian Hopkins)

A man who was spotted walking on eastbound Interstate 66 Thursday morning was arrested, but not before hitting a police officer, stealing his cruiser, leading a brief chase and swinging a shovel at state troopers authorities say.

Virginia State Police say that just before noon on Thursday, a state trooper spotted the suspect, 37-year-old Dexter Gibson of Herndon, walking in the eastbound lanes of I-66 near Route 29. An Arlington County Police officer came to help the trooper on the scene after attempting to stop the man.

When officers approached him, though, Gibson became irate and began banging on the trooper's vehicle. When the officers tried to take him into custody, the man hit the Arlington officer in the face and fled the scene in his police car.

A short pursuit onto Route 29 and then back onto westbound I-66 ended in Fairfax County when Fairfax County, Prince William County and Virginia State Police cars forced the vehicle onto the shoulder. However, the suspect then ran from the vehicle and jumped into the back of a pickup truck that was stopped on the highway.

Gibson then grabbed a shovel and started swinging it at the troopers as they approached, but then dropped it and climbed over the jersey wall back onto eastbound 66, where he fought a trooper and a police sergeant. Finally, the suspect was taken into custody, but not before both officers involved in the scuffle suffered minor injuries.

The Arlington officer who was hit in the face was evaluated at an area hospital for non-life threatening injuries. Meanwhile, Gibson faces 13 charges, including:

-one count grand larceny
-one count carjacking
-one felony count of eluding police
-two counts of malicious wounding
-two counts of destruction of property
-six counts of felony assault on a police officer

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