Delaware County

Man Stole Police Vehicle and Caused Violent Crash in Delaware Co., Police Say

The man in a stolen police car crashed into an oncoming SUV, police say; the woman inside was seriously hurt, but is recovering

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A woman was seriously hurt Thursday afternoon in a violent crash with a driver who had allegedly stolen a Delaware County police vehicle.

The crash happened on Conchester Highway near Cherry Tree Road before 3 p.m. The chain of events leading up to it started when a police officer from Upper Chichester Township in Delaware County responded to a domestic disturbance call at a gas station near the crash scene.

When the officer arrived at the station, police say, he saw a man trying to yank a woman out of her car.

The officer and the man scuffled, and the officer tried to use his taser. But the man jumped into the officer's vehicle and sped off, police say.

Later, the cruiser sped down Conchester Highway, crossed into oncoming traffic and slammed into an SUV being driven by a 47-year-old woman, police said. The impact of the crash lifted her SUV into the air and left both vehicles crushed, so much so that they were difficult to make out.

"I almost couldn’t believe it was a car," said Ryan Shomo, who came upon the wreck while delivering pizzas for a nearby restaurant. "It was just a mass of steel. … The only way I knew it was a police car was because there were lights on the top."

The woman has been hospitalized with broken bones and other injuries.

The man who police say was in the stolen car has not been identified, though police said he is 27. He is also hospitalized with critical injuries.

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