WA cop drives over soldier, drags him down the street
By Hana Kim
Tacoma, WA (KCPQ) -- A JBLM soldier was in critical condition Monday after Tacoma patrol car drove over him this weekend.
Emanuel Andrade, a father of two, is fighting for his life at Tacoma's St. Joseph Hospital, and home surveillance video shows why.
The surveillance video was rolling in the 600 block of North Fife Street at about 1:18 a.m. Saturday. The video shows the soldier lying in the middle of the street and a police cruiser running right over him.
"They dragged him down the street, that's even worse," the victim's wife, Susana Andrade, said.
It's unknown why the 22-year-old soldier was lying in the street. Tacoma police say the officer was checking for car prowlers and running license plates on his computer right before the accident.
"It was totally unintentional; he feels horrible," Tacoma police spokeswoman Loretta Cool said.
The video is infrared so Emanuel is not wearing a white shirt as it appears on the video but dark clothing instead, and police say the officer simply did not see what was ahead.
"There wasn't distracted driving; they looked and he didn't see the person," Cool said.
The soldier's wife isn't buying that story.
"I want him (the police officer) off the job, if it was intentional or unintentional, there is no excuse for that," Susana said.
She is also upset because, she said, the department has yet to contact her as her husband lies on a hospital bed, unable to talk or breathe on his own.
"They haven't told me nothing. They haven't even come by to check up on my husband," Susana said.
Q13 Fox News asked why the department had not reached out to the victim's family.
"We are trying to let people just like our officer kind of absorb what's going on," Cool said.
The officer involved has not been questioned yet but Tacoma police say they will be doing a complete investigation. The officer involved is on paid leave as the investigation continues
"If it was somebody else, a regular person, I am pretty sure that regular person who ran over my husband would be sitting in jail right now," Susana said.
With too much grief and little answers, Susana has a plea for the public.
"Can anybody come forward and help, you know, help me find answers to why this happened?" Susana asked.
She said her husband went out with some friends hours before the accident but that he was not a heavy drinker who would just pass out in the middle of the street.
Emanuel served in Afghanistan and was at the end of his service at JBLM, set to be released next month.
Now, his wife says, he needs multiple surgeries and his recovery could take up to a year.