Last week, Clayton County Police Officer Michael Hooks was run over by a pickup truck while responding to a call. Thomas Paige, the alleged driver, fled on foot and became the subject of a manhunt.
Paige was arrested Wednesday afternoon in Duluth, Channel 2 Action News reports. Now, in addition to criminal charges, Paige could potentially face a personal injury lawsuit brought by Officer Hooks.
Paige is accused of hitting Hooks with his pickup truck near Frontage Road and Dixie Highway. Paige tried to speed off, but his truck got stuck on the side of the road, according to authorities.
He got out and fled on foot. Paige's passenger, Jabari Jackson, remained at the scene and was taken into custody.
Paige, a military veteran, reportedly used the skills he learned in the armed services to evade police. Eventually, Clay County Police and the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force were able to track Paige down at an apartment complex in Duluth.
While seriously injured, Hooks is expected to be OK. Paige will likely face charges for aggravated assault and leaving the scene of an accident. On top of the criminal charges, Paige could face a personal injury suit from Hooks.
Hooks may argue that Paige tried to hit him on purpose, claiming he's liable for the intentional tort of battery. Civil battery, like criminal battery, is unwanted, harmful or offensive contact with the body of another.
Intentional torts can sometimes be hard to prove, since they require an element of intent. Hooks will probably also claim that Paige was negligent in hitting him. If successful, Hooks could win damages for his medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The strangest part may be that this isn't the first time Paige has tried to run over a police officer. He reportedly tried to hit another officer in July 2011 before police caught up with him. He was charged with aggravated assault, according to authorities.
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