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Video: Man steals police cruiser, crashes

In Summerville, S.C., a dashboard cam recorded an unusual altercation between police and a South Carolina man who got into a fight at a stop, then promptly stole the police cruiser and drove off at high speed. before crashing into a landscaping truck.
WCSC

(WBSC) SUMMERVILLE, S.C. - A dashboard cam recorded an unusual altercation between police and a South Carolina man who got into a fight at a stop, then promptly stole the police cruiser and drove off at high speed. before crashing into a landscaping truck.

According to police, Arthur Lee Thompson, 38, was pulled over after an alert was posted for his green Jeep, following a robbery attempt at a local WalMart last Friday. Thompson allegedly attempted to steal a computer and, when confronted, punched a store employee in the mouth.

As seen in the dashboard cam video released by police, Thompson exited his Jeep when he was stopped, disobeying the officer's commands, and then attacked the policeman.

According to the incident report, the officer used his taser on the suspect twice - first when Thompson started fighting him, and again as he first got into the police cruiser. Thompson nevertheless pulled out the taser barbs and continued fighting. He then drove off in the stolen car at speeds of over 100 m.p.h.

The dash cam video shows Thompson weaving in and out of traffic, running through several red lights and making erratic maneuvers. The high-speed chase ended three miles away when Thompson crashed the cruiser into a landscaping truck.

Thompson struggled to escape, shattering the window to get out of the wrecked car, but was arrested.

The victim in the landscaping truck was taken to a hospital and treated for non-serious injuries. Thompson was transported to Medical University of South Carolina for treatment.

WCSC reports that a toxicology report showed Thompson testing positive for cocaine base.

But the incident didn't end there. While at the hospital, WCSC reports Thompson became extremely violent, trying to escape his restraints, and during booking he boasted of the size of the policeman he had taken on: "You should've seen how big the officer was that I worked. He was like 280 pounds."

According to the police report, at the hospital Thompson admitted he was high and asked if he "made the news."

Yep, he did.

  • David Morgan

    David Morgan is a senior editor at CBSNews.com and cbssundaymorning.com.