Southern Utah man arrested after allegedly assaulting police officer

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LA VERKIN, Utah — A police officer who went to apprehend a suspect in a vehicle that was reported stolen was injured in the ensuing physical struggle, and the suspect is now facing charges that include aggravated assault on a police officer.

Ryan Pittman

Ryan Pittman

According to a  press release from Chief Benjamin Lee of the La Verkin Police Department, officers responded to a report just before 7 p.m. Saturday regarding a stolen vehicle.

Ryan Pittman had allegedly taken $200 in cash and a vehicle from a family member and left. A Springdale Police Department officer spotted the car in the Rockville area, but before they could make a traffic stop the vehicle drove back to La Verkin.

A Washington County deputy spotted Pittman returning to the original residence in the vehicle, and when that deputy went to apprehend Pittman a fight ensued and, “the deputy was injured as a result.”

The deputy was taken to a hospital. The extent and severity of his injuries were not clear, but he has since been released from the hospital and is recovering at home.

Pittman was arrested and booked into jail, where he faces charges of theft, theft of a vehicle, aggravated assault on a police officer, disorderly conduct and reckless driving.

La Verkin PD stated numerous agencies assisted in the search and arrest.

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