ELIZABETH — An Elizabeth man has been convicted of charges he knocked over a police officer with his car and fled the scene following a routine traffic stop in 2011, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Thursday.
Hakeem Allen, 27, formerly of Newark, was found guilty of second-degree eluding police and second-degree aggravated assault following a two-week trial and two days of jury deliberation.
On Jan. 9, 2011 Allen was pulled over on North Broad Street in Elizabeth for a minor motor vehicle violation, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Jill O’Malley, who prosecuted the case. After processing Allen’s personal information, the two police officers who initiated the traffic stop discovered that he had an outstanding warrant and that his driver’s license was suspended, O’Malley said.
When the officers asked Allen to exit his vehicle, he sped off, running over one officer’s foot and knocking him to the ground. An approximately two-mile chase through residential streets in Elizabeth followed, and Allen managed to escape when two pursuing patrol cars lost sight of him.
The injured police officer was treated for injuries at a local hospital and released, and Allen’s vehicle, which had been rented by his then-girlfriend, was later found abandoned in Hillside.
A little more than a week after the traffic stop, on Jan. 17, 2011, Elizabeth police responding to a report of three people suffering from gunshot wounds outside a city residence discovered that Allen was among them, O’Malley said. He was subsequently arrested.
Allen, who had three prior convictions on drug-related offenses out of Union County, is facing an extended term of up to 20 years in state prison, with 85 percent of his sentence on the aggravated assault charge required to be served before the possibility of parole, pursuant to the No Early Release Act. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 31, 2014.
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