A man accused of intentionally hitting a San Diego police officer with a car in Mira Mesa pleaded not guilty on Wednesday to assaulting a peace officer with a deadly weapon.
Moises Correa faces 35 years in life in prison if convicted because he has previously been convicted of a strike, including a 2011 attempted murder conviction in Maricopa County, Ariz., According to the criminal complaint filed against him.
Correa, 29, is accused of injuring the officer, whose name was not disclosed, shortly after 10 a.m. Thursday after the officer pulled over a black Chrysler sedan that Correa allegedly drove in the area from Black Mountain Road and Westview Parkway.
Police said the Chrysler fled and the officer pursued it. At one point, the driver stopped in a traffic lane and then accelerated in reverse, crashing the car into the motorcycle, according to San Diego Police Lt. Andra Brown.
After impact, the motorist continued to back up, pushing the motorcycle to the ground, with the officer trapped below. The driver, who was accompanied by a female passenger, then fled north on Black Mountain Road, police said.
The patroller, who sustained minor injuries, was treated in hospital and released. He has worked in the Police Department for 13 years and has been assigned to the Motorcycle Unit of the Traffic Division for over five years.
At around 6 p.m. Friday, officers learned that Correa was in the Mira Mesa area, Brown said. A police helicopter spotted Correa and a female companion – police believed she was the passenger in the car involved in the crash a day earlier – in the backyard of a house on Dewsbury Avenue, one little over a mile from where the accident occurred.
The companions entered the house and officers surrounded the residence, Brown said. Other occupants of the house came out and a SWAT team responded to the scene.
After a standoff that lasted several hours, the two suspects found themselves in the attic of the garage. They refused to come out, Brown said.
Police deployed chemical agents in the garage, prompting the couple to surrender. They were taken to the police headquarters for questioning.
Correa was held without bail on Wednesday.