While the prognosis of a San Francisco police officer who was apparently intentionally struck by an SUV Wednesday remains unclear, a suspect has been arrested in connection with the incident. The collision between the car and the bicycle patrol officer happened around 12:20 p.m. on Turk Street near Franklin, and as we learned yesterday, the suspect is believed to be involved in a firearms case that the officer was investigating.
ABC 7 reports from a press conference Wednesday afternoon that multiple officers were on the scene of the incident and witnessed the collision.
The Examiner reports that a suspect was arrested at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday on the 500 block of Ellis Street, and the suspect has not yet been publicly identified.
It remains unclear if this is the same suspect who, after allegedly driving his Lexus SUV into the officer, fled about a mile away and abandoned the vehicle near Buena Vista Park.
We learn via the Chronicle that the SUV had a stolen license plate on it, and that the owner of that license plate noticed it missing from their car around noon yesterday, shortly before the hit-and-run occurred.
The officer who was struck is in the intensive care unit following emergency surgery on Wednesday, and Assistant Police Chief Toney Chaplin tells the Chronicle, "I think that speaks for itself." The officer's identity has not been released, but the department says he's been on the force for four years, working out of Tenderloin Station.
Per ABC 7, Chaplin further said, "This is a tough day for the Police Department. Everyone right now is having a tough time with this, so I ask the public to keep the officer in their prayers.”
The SFPD had a somewhat chaotic day Wednesday because there was a separate incident in which a patrol officer suffered minor injuries in Japantown. As Hoodline reports, and SFPD squad car in pursuit of another vehicle got into a head-on collision around noon at the intersection of Geary Boulevard and Webster Street. The officer involved in the crash appeared OK, and walked away.
Update: The injured officer has been identified as Elia Lewin-Tankel, as ABC 7 reports, and the suspect in the hit-and-run has been identified as 50-year-old Maurice A. Johnson.
Previously: SFPD Officer Hit By Car On Turk Street