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Officer’s Condition May Spur Additional Charges in High-Speed Pursuit

Officer’s Condition May Spur Additional Charges in High-Speed Pursuit

(Stock Photo)

The Buffalo News via YellowBrix

January 04, 2010

NIAGARA FALLS—State police are waiting for an assessment of injuries to a Town of Niagara officer who was pinned by the door of his vehicle during a car chase Saturday before additional charges are filed against the man officers said caused the 45-minute ordeal.

Town of Niagara Police Officer Gary Beatty was hospitalized and released after the incident Saturday, but police are awaiting an additional assessment of Beatty’s injuries, said State Police Investigator Jerry Miller.

The suspect, Walter A. Gardner III, 34, was in guarded custody in Erie County Medical Center, Buffalo, on Sunday because of injuries he suffered during the chase, Miller said.

Miller said he expected Gardner to be charged after he is released from the hospital.

The Niagara County Sheriff’s Office said Gardner led a car chase at 2:51 a. m. Saturday that lasted 45 minutes after he refused to pull over on Walmore Road in Lewiston. The chase, which ranged from speeds between 25 mph and 45 mph, ended after State Parks Police used a spike strip to stop Gardner’s vehicle as he exited Cayuga Island at South 86th Street in Niagara Falls.

Beatty was attempting to exit his vehicle at Champlain Avenue and South 91st Street when Gardner’s vehicle struck Beatty’s police car and pinned the officer between the door and his vehicle, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Gardner was driving with a revoked license and had two outstanding warrants from the Niagara County Sheriff’s Office, according to deputies.

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