Consider it a drive-by babying.
In an effort to distract cops during a high-speed chase, a 36-year-old Florida man threw a two-month-old infant at authorities as they zoomed through residential neighbourhoods on May 26.
According to the New York Post, John Henry James III faces a number of charges including aggravated child abuse after he threw the baby out the window as he tried to lose deputies from the Indian River County Sheriff’s Ofice during a 40-minute pursuit.
In a Facebook post, Sheriff Eric Flowers noted: “You can’t throw a baby at us and expect us to treat you with kid gloves.”
Cops released dashcam and helicopter footage of the pursuit with James. While the video doesn’t show James throwing the child, it does showcase him as deputies try and detain him while another held the baby.
In an interview with news outlet CBS News 12, Deputy Jacob Curry said the suspect did an “overhand” toss with the child, which he eventually caught.
“I’ve seen some crazy stuff but this is definitely up there,” said Curby.”It wasn’t a nice underhand handoff from a foot away, it was a throw.”
According to police, a deputy tried to pull over James, who refused to stop the vehicle and later sped away. A video of the chase shows James driving his SUV into a cop car, avoiding roadblocks and other measures meant to stop the vehicle.
Cops had to back off as James travelled at high speeds near pedestrians in the residential neighbourhood. Authorities had to scale back their ground chase while a helicopter tracked the suspect’s whereabouts from above.
James reportedly drives to an apartment complex and blocked the entrance. He then abandoned the SUV and runs with the baby in tow.
After tossing the child at the cops, James struggled with authorities as a crowd gathers to watch the arrest in the parking lot.
Deputies follow him to an apartment complex and block the entrance as James ditches the car and tries to get away on foot, allegedly with the baby in his arms.
James is currently behind bars held without bond. He faces a number of felony charges, including aggravated battery on an officer/firefighter/EMT, reckless driving and resisting arrest
He is now being held without bond and facing felony charges of aggravated battery on an officer/firefighter/EMT, aggravated child abuse, reckless driving and resisting arrest.