Man detained for dragging police assistant down busy street

“I was aware that he was there, but all I had in mind at that point was to flee because I didn’t have those licenses."

A driver of a fake taxi has been detained for running down a police assistant who approached him for a check and fleeing town, Shanghai police said on Monday.

The suspect, a 29-year-old man surnamed Chen, dragged the police assistant about 20 meters and caused slight cerebral concussion and bruises to him when he fled with the policeman still holding onto the car.

Chen could face the criminal charge of “endangering public safety with dangerous means”, and if convicted could be sentenced to up to seven years in prison, police said.

The incident took place outside Xinhua Hospital near the crossroads of Kongjiang Road and Jiangpu Road at about 5:30pm last Wednesday.

The police assistant, Peng Shuguang, stopped Chen, who had illegally parked on the bike lane to release passengers from his car.

“He became very nervous when I asked to see his driving license and vehicle license, and even tried to bribe me when I asked if he was driving a fake taxi because he couldn’t show me his licenses,” Peng told Shanghai Daily.

While Peng was still holding on to Chen’s car window with his right arm, Chen suddenly accelerated the car and drove off.

Chen said he was driving at 40 to 50 kilometers per hour with the police assistant clinging to his car.

“I was aware that he was there, but all I had in mind at that point was to flee because I didn’t have those licenses,” Chen, who is now being held at the police detention center in Yangpu District, told Shanghai Daily. “I thought he would give up.”

Peng was knocked unconscious after he finally came free from the car, before being rushed by his colleagues to the hospital for treatment. He has now recovered.

Chen, on the other hand, was immediately being tracked citywide.

Zheng Weijia, a criminal police officer in Yangpu District who was in charge of the case, said the suspect’s identity was soon determined and he was found to have left his car in a spot in Pudong and then fled Shanghai on a train the next day.

Police travelled to Chen’s home town in Anhui Province last Saturday, where he was apprehended. 

Chen said he purchased the fake taxi and then a plate about two months ago at the price of about 20,000 yuan (US$3,000) in Shanghai.

He said he made 5,000 to 6,000 yuan every month with the car.

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