Milton officer out of surgery, expected to recover after being run over by fleeing suspect

MILTON, Wash. — A Milton officer is out of surgery Wednesday night and recovering after he was dragged by a car and run over, according to the Milton Police Department.

“[They] protect people that they don’t even know and put their lives on the line and then this is a reality of what can happen,” said Milton Police Chief Tony Hernandez.

Officer Erik Haney -- a five-year veteran of the department -- and another officer were attempting to take a suspect into custody on an outstanding drug warrant near the 400 block of Meridian Avenue East, near the Pierce and King County line.

During the arrest, the suspect attempted to flee, and Haney was dragged by the suspect’s vehicle through a parking lot and then was run over, resulting in serious life-threatening injuries.

“This is a prime example of how a situation that could’ve been very simple became very dangerous,” said Chief Hernandez.

Haney suffered injuries to both legs and hands. He was transported to a hospital and underwent surgery for his injuries.

In a statement Wednesday night, the Mayor of Milton said, “I’m happy to report that Officer Haney is out of surgery, in good condition and is expected to make a full recovery.”

“We call him the giant teddy bear. He’s been working for us for about 5 years,” Chief Hernandez explained. “He’s well liked in the community; he’s loved by all.”

The second officer, Officer Jake Wilcox, was not harmed and provided aid to Haney until medics with East Pierce Fire and Rescue arrived.

“It escalated quite quickly. It could’ve been a lot worse than it was. We could have had two dead individuals. As you know, the officer could’ve been killed, we still don’t know what kind of complications he’ll have after his surgery,” Chief Hernandez added.

The 32-year-old suspect was later pursued and arrested by the Kent Police Department after a PIT maneuver off 74th Ave S around 6:30 a.m.

He was booked into the Pierce County Jail on charges of felony assault on a police officer and resisting arrest.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Officer Haney and his family during this difficult time,” Chief Hernandez said. “This incident underscores the bravery of our officers and all law enforcement officers and their willingness to confront danger to protect and serve our community.”

If you have information about this incident, contact the Milton Police Department at 253-831-4278 or email miltonpolicewebsite@cityofmilton.net.

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