California Officer in Critical Condition After Being Dragged by Suspect Vehicle and Hit by Oncoming Car
El Cajon, CA – An El Cajon police officer is in critical condition after being dragged during a car stop on Monday.
The unidentified officers responded to a call to investigate a parked, partially blocking vehicle on E. Washington Avenue at about 8:30 a.m. There were reportedly two people sleeping inside the black Volkswagen SUV in question.
Police woke the subjects up and one gave the officers an identification card that wasn’t his. While the officers investigated, the occupant started the vehicle and put it in gear. An officer attempted to detain the man.
El Cajon PD Lt. Randy Soulard said, “One of the officers attempted to detain the driver and keep him from fleeing the scene. In doing so, the officer was trapped in the vehicle and dragged for a distance as the driver fled.”
NBC7 reported that while the officer was being dragged, he was struck by an oncoming vehicle, at which point he let go of the SUV and was “launched.”
Authorities identify man suspected of fleeing, injuring El Cajon police officer https://t.co/gvhNb0QoYw
— News 8 San Diego (@News8) December 15, 2020
As of the time of this writing, the officer is listed in critical but stable condition. A press release from ECPD said his injuries were “significant.”
The SUV was found to be a rental vehicle out of San Diego. It was found crashed near the scene, but the occupants have fled. They have not yet been brought into custody.
One of the suspects, the driver, has been identified as 41-year-old David Francis Cepeda Pangilinan, according to police. Pangilinan is described as Guamanian, 5-foot-6, 200-pounds, with brown hair and eyes. The passenger is described as a Hispanic female in her late teens or early 20’s.
Anyone with information on the suspect’s whereabouts is asked to call (619) 579-3311 or anonymously call (888) 580-8477.
NBC7 spoke to a local resident, who said, “To the person or persons who hit-and-run that officer, turn yourself in, dude. It’s not worth it. It’s Christmas time; that guy could be seriously injured. Give yourself up.”