Lehigh Valley

Allentown man faces trial in chase that injured 3 officers

Trial for man accused of injuring officers

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - A 36-year-old Allentown man accused of leading police on a chase that injured three officers is heading to trial.

On Wednesday, David Estes waived his preliminary hearing in Lehigh County court.

He is now facing trial on charges that include attempted criminal homicide, aggravated assault, fleeing and eluding, drug possession with intent to deliver, receiving stolen property, and several other charges. He remains jailed at Lehigh County Prison.

The April 26 chase occurred near a major event being attended by Gov. Tom Corbett and many other dignitaries.

Police say the chase started around 2:30 p.m., when patrol units attempted to stop a vehicle being driven by Estes, a narcotics suspect, in the area of North 7th and Allen streets.

The pursuit traveled into Whitehall Township, then eventually back into the city, where officers observed several traffic violations, at a safe distance from Estes, according to police.

Estes eventually drove through the 500 block of Linden Street at a high rate of speed, and was forced to stop due to heavy traffic at the intersection of North 6th and Linden streets.

During the chase, one officer on a bike was hit by the suspect's vehicle. The suspect also ran into a police car, injuring another officer. A third officer was hurt while making the arrest. All of the injured officers are expected to recover.

The chase eventually ended in the area of North 6th and Gordon streets, where the suspects were taken into custody.

A search warrant of the defendant's residence uncovered two handguns, one of which was stolen. A search of the defendant's vehicle yielded approximately 14 grams of methamphetamine.

The incident interrupted a major Allentown event:

At the time of the incident, the Pennsylvania Society was holding a luncheon in a huge tent at 6th and Linden streets.

The rear-ended police car apparently was pushed into a utility pole along Linden Street near the luncheon tent.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, the chief justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, cabinet secretaries, state senators and Congressman Charlie Dent were at the luncheon, which was attended by 400 to 500 people.

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