- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
A call to St. Mary’s 911 dispatchers last week included an image of a man holding a knife to his face, court papers state, prompting a confrontation between police and the driver of a pickup truck.
John Richard Clarke, 49, of California was released from custody on personal recognizance after his arrest on charges of attempted first-degree assault on five law officers and a police dog, in court papers alleging the suspect drove the pickup truck toward them on Thursday, July 5, outside a Hollywood home.
Clarke sent a picture message of himself and the knife during his call to the 911 dispatchers earlier that day, court papers state, and the officers went to a residence on Reeder Sanders Lane and located a Ford F-150 pickup truck parked outside.
They shined their flashlights into the vehicle, court papers state, and when they spotted Clarke sitting inside the cab, they identified themselves and repeatedly told him to show them his hands.
“As police continued to approach, ... the defendant [started and] put the vehicle in drive and drove at a high speed straight at [the] uniformed police officers,” according to court papers identifying the officers as St. Mary’s sheriff’s deputies William Bankhead, Cory Ellis, Michael George and Glen Knott, and Trooper E.T. Reuschling of the Maryland State Police, along with K-9 Yogi from the sheriff’s office.
“Had police not moved from the vehicle’s path, they would have been struck,” Bankhead wrote in a statement of probable cause, and the truck went past six marked police cruisers as it left the area. Clarke was arrested the next day at his residence.