U.S. News

Police car in Tacoma, Washington, smashes through crowd watching street racers

(Reuters) - A Tacoma Police vehicle plowed through a group of pedestrians swarming it, knocking several people to the pavement, after authorities responded to reports of drag racers in the Washington city’s downtown, online video showed early on Sunday.

One person was hurt, although the severity of the injuries was unclear, according to local media.

The short video, which was shot by an onlooker just before 7 p.m. local time on Saturday and later posted online, shows cars with squealing tires turning donuts on downtown streets. Then the Tacoma Police patrol car - surrounded by people - surges forward, knocking roughly five people to the ground before driving off.

Tacoma Police spokeswoman Wendy Haddow said police were alerted to the street racers and a 100-person crowd blocking area streets, according to the News Tribune. When the patrol car responded, the crowd began pounding on the vehicle’s windows, she told local media.

“He was afraid they would break his glass,” Haddow told the News Tribune, saying the officer sped away from the scene for his own safety.

One person was injured in the incident and taken to a local hospital, she said.

Haddow did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Reporting by Barbara Goldberg in New York; Editing by Matthew Lewis