Lehigh Valley

Allentown teen on dirt bike allegedly drags police officer

Police said he tried to goad police into a chase

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - An Allentown teenager is facing charges after authorities allege he tried to goad police into a chase on his dirt bike and eventually dragged an officer through a parking lot.

Police charged Kason E. Torruella with escape and three counts of reckless endangerment in connection with the incident Monday evening in the 200 block of Hamilton Street. District Judge Ronald Manescu arraigned the 18-year-old Thursday, setting bail at $25,000.

An Allentown police officer said he was in the area of Second and Turner streets shortly before 5:30 p.m. Monday when Torruella pulled next to his squad car. The teen allegedly asked the officer if he would chase him and drove away when the officer declined, according to court records.

Torruella allegedly followed the officer as he pulled into the American Plaza parking lot at 201 Hamilton St. As the officer walked toward the Dunkin Donuts, Torreulla allegedly rode his dirt bike onto the sidewalk yelling profanities in the officer’s direction, according to records.

The officer said he repeated that he wouldn’t chase Torreulla. He allegedly drove onto the sidewalk once the officer walked into the Dunkin Donuts, which agitated patrons inside and prompted the officer to again speak with the teen.

Police said he appeared upset over the recent arrest of a cousin. Each time the officer tried to approach Torreulla, he kept pulling away until he drove onto the Hamilton Street sidewalk into the path of some pedestrians, according to records.

Believing the incident was over when Torreulla sped away doing wheelies on Hamilton Street, the officer went to buy his coffee. But a second officer who responded was seen standing in the street holding a piece of clothing.

Torreulla began speaking with the second officer who also pulled into the parking lot. The dirt bike stalled, and the officer grabbed the rider and tried to apprehend him. Torrreulla allegedly refused to stop and sped out of the parking lot, dragging the officer onto Hamilton Street. He sustained knee and ankle injuries.

Investigators on Tuesday found a cell phone video of the incident that Torreulla had posted to his Facebook page.

Torreulla also faces disorderly conduct and traffic violations. He failed to post bail and was sent to Lehigh County Jail to await a preliminary hearing tentatively scheduled for Feb. 16.


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