Pedestrians Swarm Fleeing Suspect

PUBLISHED: 6:23 PM 13 Mar 2018

Good Samaritans Jump Into Action After Man Attempts To Flee Car Accident

They surrounded his vehicle and tried smashing his windows with their fists and a sledgehammer.

Just recently, a video surfaced online showing the driver of an SUV attempting to flee the scene of a car crash while nearby pedestrians try to stop him.

Earlier this week, a driver in Miami, Florida crashed into another car. After doing so, he was then caught on video fleeing the scene.

His escape, however, was hindered by a mob of nearby pedestrians who charged up to the vehicle and struck it with their fists and a sledgehammer to try to stop it from leaving. Although the driver eventually managed to get away, local police officers were able to track him down later on and take him into custody.

Miami police officers recently arrested 25-year-old Maxwell Oleg Lagutenko shortly after he fled the scene of a car accident. According to reports, the incident began when “the driver of an SUV crossed over a median in Miami and drove into oncoming traffic, hitting three cars before coming to a stop.”

After crashing into the cars, several nearby pedestrians pulled out their phones and began recording. In their videos, Lagutenko can be seen reversing his SUV away from one of the cars that he struck while several other drivers swarm his car. 

Eventually, however, he was able to drive around the mob of pedestrians. A bit further down the road, though, a good Samaritan blocked the road with their car, giving the mob of pedestrians a chance to catch back up to the car.

After drawing near, several outraged pedestrians can then be seen smacking Lagutenko’s windows with their bare hands while he still tries to move around the car blocking the road. Upon seeing the chaos, a driver in a nearby white van grabbed a sledgehammer and jumped out of his car. He then charged up to the SUV windows and proceeded to smash them with the sledgehammer to help try to stop the vehicle from leaving.

Unfortunately, despite their attempts, Lagutenko managed to get around the car blocking his way and escape. He was then “involved in a short pursuit” with an officer who was told to end the chase due to the “city’s no chase policy of non-violent crimes.”

Thankfully, though, it was easy for officers to find Lagutenko, who seemed to be “to be high on narcotics,” later on. They then placed him under arrest and charged him with “reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident causing property damage and fleeing and eluding a police officer.”

Fortunately, it’s fairly common for a good Samaritans to come to the aid of others. For example, a few weeks ago, 35-year-old Joshua Len Jones stormed into the Faith City Mission, which is a “faith-based outreach organization” in Amarillo, Texas, with a firearm. Shortly after seeing the gunman, several churchgoers heroically charged the gunman and tackled him to the ground.

Once on the floor, one of the congregants, later identified as Tony Garces, grabbed ahold of Jones’ hand and wrestled the gun away from him. “I said ‘hey, hey I got the gun. I took the gun away from him,’” recalled Garces.  

Unfortunately, though, right after Garces grabbed the gun, police officers barged into the church, saw him holding the firearm, and concluded that he was the suspect. They then aimed their weapons at him and ordered him to throw the gun down.

Garces, however, hesitated to drop the gun because he was worried about it misfiring when it hit the floor. The officers took his hesitation as a refusal to comply with orders, though, and shot him in the torso.

“[The police] said throw it down. I wasn’t going to throw it down because it could have fired. It had bullets in it, you know. I didn’t want anyone else getting hurt,” he reasoned.

“Then pop, pop they shot me…I went down, then a puddle of blood…I thought I was a goner,” he continued, adding, “I got the gun. I thought it was over. but they the cops shot me. The good guys shot me.”

The officers quickly realized their mistake and placed Jones under arrest. He’s currently facing six felony charges of first-degree aggravated kidnapping and is being held on $1.2 million bail at a local prison.

And several days before that, an unidentified police officer in Springville, Utah reportedly noticed a person, later identified as Paul Douglas Anderson, in a Tabatha’s Way donation bin. Upon seeing Anderson, the officer approached and ordered him to get out.

He complied but allegedly refused to take his hands out of his pockets. Eventually, he took his hands out of his pockets, but it wasn’t to surrender. Instead, it was to repeatedly punch the officer in the face.  

During the assault against the law enforcement official, Derek Meyer, a concealed-carry permit holder and good Samaritan, drove by and noticed what was happened. Concerned, he immediately did a u-turn, parked nearby, and then drew his firearm. He then approached Anderson and ordered him to surrender.

Upon seeing Meyer’s gun, he ceased the assault against the officer and promptly fled the scene. Shortly after, several other officers arrived and proceeded to search the area for him. After about a half hour, they found him hiding under a flatbed trailer.

Without a doubt, those who risk their lives to stop crime or save others are extremely honorable people. Hopefully, the actions of the pedestrians in Miami inspire others to do the same when faced with a similar situation.