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Lacrosse Player Helps Nab Hit-And-Run Suspect

BOCA RATON (CBSMiami) – A Lynn University lacrosse player said he saw a man running from police so he decided to jump in and help.

Brandon Rothstein, 22, tackled the alleged hit-and-run suspect and put him in a sleeper hold.

According to the Boca Raton police arrest report, Rothstein hit the man in the chest and was able to knock him down as he ran across the campus lacrosse field.

"I just kind of wrapped him up. His face hit my shoulder, he spun around, he kinda collapsed and I put him in a sleeper hold until the police officer told me to release him,"said Rothstein.

As the senior lacrosse player watched Cohen sprint across their brand new field. Rothstein said he quickly determined that the young man was unarmed and decided to act.

"We haven't played on this field yet and to see somebody -- especially somebody who has a complete disregard for their freedom -- running across our field, I just thought he had to be stopped. Not on our field," said Rothstein.

Rothstein said he was about to board a bus for an away game when he saw the police foot chase.

Police said a Taser was used on the suspect, Spencer Cohen, 25 of Boca Raton.  He was arrested.

According to Rothstein, he did not want the man running across the lacrosse field that has yet to be unveiled, the Sun Sentinel reported.

Police said the incident started when an officer noticed a Toyota with an expired decal.  As the officer was running the plate on the car to verify the tag was expired, Cohen allegedly made erratic maneuvers, ran a red light and crashed into several cars.

Two people were injured and transported to a hospital.

The police report said Cohen drove in to the Lynn University campus and crashed into a utility trailer and a parked car.

He allegedly got out of the car and ran. That's when Rothstein jumped in to help.

Police don't want bystanders to put their lives in danger, but a spokesperson with Boca Raton police said the assistance was appreciated.

Cohen faces charges of fleeing a marked police car, failure to remain at a crash involving injuries and failing to fulfill duty upon damaging unattended property.

Rothstein is a criminal justice major from New York and told the Sun Sentinel he hopes to work in law enforcement.

The Sun Sentinel contributed to this report.

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