POMPANO BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A man was taken into custody after he was involved in a crash in Pompano Beach while attempting to flee from deputies in a stolen SUV, leaving a responding deputy injured, authorities said.
Officials identified the man as Ronwel Ocampo.
The incident took place at the busy intersection of East Atlantic Boulevard and North Federal Highway, Saturday night.
Dashcam video showed cars sitting in traffic as drivers waited to head north on U.S. 1.
A witness who spoke with 7News over the phone described what happened next.
“First I saw a police car approaching on the wrong side of the road, made a right, turned in front of the traffic, blocked the intersection,” he said.
Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies were responding to a call of a stolen SUV.
The dashcam video captured the white or light-colored GMC SUV as it plowed into another car. The driver of the SUV then found himself stuck in the right lane as deputies walked toward the vehicle.
“I saw guns drawn. I heard a lot of screaming, ‘Get out of the car,'” said the witness. “I saw a bunch of police on foot approaching from behind.”
A deputy smashed the driver’s side front window, but that didn’t deter the motorist, who backed up, pulled forward and found a way to speed through the intersection.
“I honestly thought I was going to see that guy’s life over. I can’t believe they didn’t kill him,” said the witness, “because [that’s what usually happens] anytime there’s that many police on foot around a vehicle that’s definitely kind of out of control and someone who clearly has no respect for the commands that they’re giving him.”
“There was quite a few of them undercover cars, and they were hooking and booking, you know? You can hear them coming,” said another witness. “Who knows what’s in the car, they don’t want to go to jail, they’re trying to get away.”
Deputies nabbed Ocampo about 11 blocks north, along the 1100 block of North Federal Highway.
One deputy suffered minor injuries from the subject’s vehicle.
Investigators said the driver struck two vehicles while trying to get away.
“I feel terrible for other vehicles that now they have to spend their Easter weekend safety going through insurance claims and everything else for something that they had nothing to do with,” said the witness. “Not only was their safety put at risk but property damage and just everything else.”
Ocampo is being charged with aggravated assault, aggravated battery on an officer, resisting arrest, aggravated fleeing and grand theft auto.
He was already out on bond for a previous arrest, so now he’s being held without bond.
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