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September 11, 2013

Police taser suspect after Canal Street foot chase

LAWRENCE — A 24-year-old local man was arrested after police allegedly saw him speeding, then chased him and tasered him Sunday night.

Eric Engels, 24, of 81 Farley St., was arrested and charged with speeding, resisting arrest, unlawful possession of ammunition, driving after license suspension and an outstanding warrant after the 6:15 p.m. incident.

Police recovered 21 rounds of .25 caliber ammunition in the black Honda Accord coupe Engels was driving. Engels told officers the ammunition didn’t belong to him and he had let a friend use the car earlier, according to a police report.

In a report, Sgt. Michael Simard said he spotted Engels at the wheel of a black Honda speeding southbound on Broadway near the Essex Street intersection. The Honda was traveling roughly 50 mph some 20 mph over the speed limit, Simard said.

Simard followed the Honda to 599 Canal St., activated his blue lights and pulled over the car.

But as Simard was about to call in his location to dispatch, the driver’s side door of the Honda swung open and Engels made a run for it. He ran from Canal Street toward Franklin Street, Simard wrote.

Simard chased Engels in the cruiser, watching him as he tried to get into a building at 599 Canal St. but the door was locked. As other officers converged on the area, Simard was now on foot, chasing Engels. When he refused to stop, Simard “deployed the prongs from my taser” but apparently missed Engels, he wrote.

Engles was tackled by officer Miguel Romero. He resisted arrest, struggling with officers who tried to handcuff him, police said. Sgt. Michael Mangan tasered Engels to subdue him. He “admitted to officers on scene that he fled because he had a suspended license and warrant,” according to the report.

Police found the ammunition on the front passenger side of the Honda. The keys to the car were also left in the driver’s side front door pocket. “It now appeared to officers Engels fled the vehicle because he possessed a firearm. A thorough search of the area was conducted ... but to no avail. A gun was not found,” Simard wrote.

Engels was treated at Lawrence General Hospital for minor cuts and the taser prongs were also removed from his body, police said.

The Honda belongs to his girlfriend, a local woman, police said.


Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter under the screenname EagleTribJill.

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