Lenexa police continue search for driver who nearly ran down officer

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LENEXA, Kan. -- Police are searching for a driver who nearly ran over one of their officers early Thursday morning with a box truck.

Police want this dangerous driver off the streets.

"That is a very scary situation," said Maj. Dawn Layman of the Lenexa police. "To be in his shoes being struck by that vehicle and not knowing after that, what would occur, it’s a very scary situation. We are just very fortunate that he wasn’t injured."

The incident started with a traffic violation near 87th Street and Nieman Road.

Police say a rookie officer and her training officer stopped a U-Haul rental truck on what should have been routine police work.

But nowadays traffic stops can be anything but routine.

As the new officer approached the truck's driver's side, her training partner walked up to the passenger window to monitor the interaction.

Police say as soon as the officer asked the driver for his license, the suspect floored the gas pedal, speeding away.

That's when the wider box portion of the truck nearly knocked the training officer to the ground.

"Because the box truck extends out, when the vehicle accelerated it struck the officer in the arm, spinning him around where he basically lost his balance," Layman said.

Police pursued the rental truck into Overland Park, where officers say the chase went off road near the Deer Creek Golf Club on 133rd Street, before the driver bailed out and ran away.

The suspect remains at large, despite efforts by a police tracking dog and officers from Overland Park and Leawood to find him.

Police tell FOX4 they are reviewing body camera video of the incident to try to identify the driver. They are also checking records to learn who rented the truck from U-Haul. Police don't believe the truck had been reported stolen.



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