A Florida police officer attempting to stop a suspected drunk driver inadvertently sent the vehicle airborne into oncoming traffic, according to reports.
On March 25, during the height of spring break mayhem in Miami Beach, Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Andrew Sackmann began following a Nissan SUV on I-395 at approximately 2:45 a.m., suspecting that the driver was impaired, Local 10 News reported.
The driver of the vehicle, Kevin Palma Molina, refused to pull over, prompting Sackmann to perform a Precision Immobilization Technique, or PIT maneuver, on the SUV in an attempt to force it to stop, according to the outlet.
— WPLG Local 10 News (@WPLGLocal10) April 12, 2023
In dashcam video of the incident, Sackmann is seen pulling up alongside the SUV and steering into it sharply. The purpose of the maneuver is to force the fleeing car into an abrupt 180-degree turn, forcing the driver to stop. Instead, Sackmann’s maneuver reportedly drove the SUV into the guardrail, causing it to go airborne and fly over the median and into oncoming traffic before coming to a stop against the barrier on the opposite side of the highway, Local 10 News reported. (RELATED: Car Flips Into Highway Work Zone, Kills 6 Near Baltimore)
The crashed SUV was found to have been stolen from New York, and Florida Highway Patrol officers found empty alcohol bottles inside the vehicle, the outlet reported.
Molina reportedly failed a field sobriety test and was subsequently arrested for fleeing and eluding police, driving under the influence, DUI damage to property or person, driving without a valid driver’s license and grand theft of a motor vehicle, Local 10 reported.