72-Year-Old Strattanville Man Sentenced to Probation for Hitting Police Officer with Car
Clarion County President Judge James G. Arner sentenced 72-year-old Edward Lemon Goodman to one year of probation on a second-degree felony count of aggravated assault.
Goodman was also ordered to complete an anger management program.
Court documents indicate Goodman pleaded no contest to the above charge on July 10, 2019.
As a result of the plea agreement, the following charges were dismissed:
- Recklessly Endangering Another Person, Misdemeanor 2
- Accident Involving Damage to Attended Vehicle, Misdemeanor 3
The charges stem from an incident that occurred in Clarion Borough in February 2019.
According to a criminal complaint filed by Clarion Borough Police Officer Roger Wright, the incident occurred at the intersection of South 5th Avenue and Wood Street on the morning of Monday, February 4.
At around 10:26 a.m. Clarion Borough Police Officer Shawn Zerfoss contacted Officer Wright and told him that a red sedan had just accelerated toward him while he was walking in the crosswalk at the intersection of South 5th Avenue and Wood Street. Officer Zerfoss said that as he attempted to avoid being hit the vehicle struck his hand.
Officer Zerfoss was able to relay the vehicle’s license plate number to Officer Wright and indicated that the driver fled the scene traveling north on South 5th Avenue and had just made a right turn heading east on Main Street.
According to the criminal complaint, Officer Wright observed a red Chevrolet Cruze traveling east on Main Street near the Suites on Main. He was able to confirm that the vehicle’s plate number matched the number provided by Officer Zerfoss and subsequently initiated a traffic stop.
Clarion Borough Police Chief William Peck arrived on the scene as the traffic stop was being initiated.
Police advised Goodman, the driver, that he was pulled over for striking a police officer who was walking in a crosswalk.
According to the criminal complaint, Goodman replied, “He (the officer) had no business crossing there,” and “he could have waited.”
Police asked Goodman if he saw Officer Zerfoss in the crosswalk, and Goodman confirmed that he did, according to the criminal complaint.
When police asked Goodman if he had time to stop for Officer Zerfoss, he said that he did, but Zerfoss, “Should have waited.”
The criminal complaint states that Goodman then asked Chief Peck, “Remember that time I had a problem with you and tried to get you fired?”
Chief Peck responded by asking Goodman if he had an issue with the Clarion Borough Police Department and Goodman replied, “Yes, I don’t like the Clarion Police,” according to the criminal complaint.
A short time later, Officer Zerfoss arrived on the scene and provided further details on the incident.
Officer Zerfoss said he was on the west side of South 5th Avenue and crossed over the southbound lane as a white vehicle stopped to let him cross. As he was walked past the middle of the roadway, he saw a northbound red Chevrolet sedan accelerate in his direction. Officer Zerfoss made it to the edge of the east side of South 5th Avenue, and as he turned, the vehicle struck his right hand with its passenger side mirror and back window.
Officer Zerfoss complained of “stinging” in his right hand, but he did not require medical attention.
According to the criminal complaint, Officer Wright examined Goodman’s vehicle and noted that “the paint was clean on the edge of the passenger-side mirror.” He also located three finger marks on the back passenger side window of the vehicle. Photographs were obtained.
In a phone interview around the time of the incident with exploreClarion.com, Chief Peck stated that he believed Goodman intentionally struck Officer Zerfoss.
“It’s my belief that he recklessly and intentionally struck my officer,” said Chief Peck.
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