New Year’s Eve Police Chase Ends in Crash and An Officer Suspended
What started as a routine traffic stop turned into a high-speed police chase and ended in a 3 car pileup and at least 4 people injured.
According to reporting by The Buffalo News, Buffalo Police Officer Majed Ottman attempted to stop a driver on New Year's Eve for a minor traffic infraction.
It's alleged that the driver Officer Ottman attempted to stop, 27-year-old Andre Thomas of Buffalo, did not stop and speed off down Cornwall Ave. towards Delavan Ave. The car driven by Thomas did not stop at the stop sign and proceeded to hit a car that was traveling down Delavan. Officer Ottman sped after him down Cornwall in his patrol car, and according to the police report filed by Ottman, he was not able to stop in time and subsequently crashed into the other two vehicles.
The three-car crash ended with at least four people injured, including the driver of the speeding car Andre Thomas, two people in the innocent vehicle, and Officer Ottman's partner. Everyone who was hurt was taken to the Erie County Medical Center where they were treated and released with minor injuries.
Thomas was subsequently arrested and charged with a slew of offenses, including resisting arrest and fleeing an officer. He is due back in court at a later date.
Unless there is the threat of a serious felony and/or violent felony, the Buffalo Police Department has a no-chase policy. By engaging in this high-speed chase, it appears that Officer Ottman violated this long-standing procedure and he has been suspended while officials conduct an internal affairs investigation.
The Buffalo Police Department takes any potential violation of policies or procedures seriously and will investigate accordingly
-Buffalo Police Captain Jeff Rinaldo, speaking to The Buffalo News