Man who fled from police, resulting in injured trooper connected to ‘drug investigation’

Feb 13, 2024, 6:23 PM | Updated: Feb 14, 2024, 5:58 am

SALT LAKE CITY — Sammy Michael Swickey, 43, was involved in a police chase Tuesday that resulted in a trooper being seriously injured. It was not initially known why so many law enforcement agencies were after Swickey, but it has since been released by Salt Lake police that he is connected to a “drug investigation.”

The ordeal began as a traffic stop at approximately 10 a.m. when officers attempted to pull Swickey over, but he immediately sped off. The officers did not chase him initially and instead scanned the SUV’s information. It was likely made apparent to them that they were dealing with a suspect who had a somewhat extensive criminal history.

Trooper seriously hurt after falling off overpass near I-80 in Salt Lake City

Swickey’s criminal record dates back to at least 2008 in the state of Utah, according to court documents. Some of his most recent charges were heard in the 3rd District Court and resulted in many of the charges — most of them drug-related —  being dismissed. On Jul. 31, 2023, Swickey entered a plea in abeyance, for possession or use of a controlled substance charge, a third-degree felony; and theft by receiving stolen property, a second-degree felony.

The two charges were for different dates. The first was obtained on Mar. 21, 2022 and the second on Jul. 13, 2023.

Swickey was booked Tuesday for aggravated assault against a public safety officer, a second-degree felony; possession of a controlled substance, a class B misdemeanor; possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor; and two counts of felony fleeing, class A misdemeanors.

After Swickey drove off the first time, the officers broadcast a description of the SUV to surrounding law enforcement agencies, and another officer located Swickey approximately 13 minutes later. The second officer attempted to stop him, but Swickey rammed the patrol car and drove off a second time. The car was damaged but the officer was not hurt.

UHP said its officers were on Interstate 80 where Swickey had been driving and were setting up tire deflation devices in hopes they would debilitate the SUV and stop him. While they were doing so, one trooper fell off the bridge they had been working on, landing on the dirt road below.

Authorities did not detail exactly where Swickey was located at the time of the trooper’s fall. They declined to confirm or deny whether the trooper had been hit by Swickey or detail any other events leading up to the moment he fell.

An update was provided by UHP late in the afternoon, stating the trooper sustained “very serious injuries” and is still in the same medical status, but is expected to recover.

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Man who fled from police, resulting in injured trooper connected to ‘drug investigation’