WEST VALLEY CITY — Criminal charges were filed Monday against a Magna man accused of dragging a West Valley police officer with the stolen pickup truck he was driving before ramming into two patrol cars.
On Oct. 22, West Valley police responded to the area of 6700 West and 4150 South on a report of a suspicious vehicle that had been idling in a church parking lot for a couple of hours. Officers found Anthony James Pearson, 26, asleep inside a pickup and could see drug paraphernalia through the window, according to charging documents.
As officers attempted to take Pearson out of the vehicle, he "woke up and began saying, 'Whoa, whoa,'" then put his vehicle in gear and accelerated while an officer was still holding onto his arm, the charges state.
Pearson drove into two police cars, and the officer who had grabbed onto him let go "and tumbled a few times onto the ground" causing minor head and shoulder injuries, according to the charges.
Police say Pearson hit one police patrol car head-on and pushed it across the parking lot, across the street and onto the front lawn of a residence.
The truck Pearson was driving — which was determined to be stolen — was later spotted near 6200 West and 4000 South. Pearson attempted to drive through a field and became stuck, so he got out and ran to a nearby relative's house, the charges state. An officer was able to follow the fleeing Pearson "using his drone."
Pearson surrendered an hour later without further incident.
Pearson is charged in 3rd District Court with aggravated assault, a first-degree felony; theft by receiving stolen property and criminal mischief; second-degree felonies; failing to stop at the command of an officer, a third-degree felony; failing to stop for an injury accident, a class A misdemeanor; and possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor.