WEST JORDAN — A man originally found passed out at the wheel was arrested Tuesday night after police say he woke up, rammed a patrol car and led officers on a chase.
Officers were called to a Chevron, 6995 S. 1300 West, about 11:40 p.m. by the gas station attendant who said a man had been passed out in his car for about an hour, said West Jordan Police Sgt. Joe Monson.
When officers arrived, Raju Suthar, 35, was still passed out, Monson said. They tapped on his window to wake him up and asked for identification.
After allegedly giving the officers a false name, Suthar started his car and put it in reverse. An officer attempted to stop him by "grabbing the gear shift and putting it in park," according to a Salt Lake County Jail report.
Fearing he would be injured, however, an officer stepped away from the vehicle as Suthar resumed going backward with the driver's side door still open and rammed a police patrol car behind him with his door, and then drove off, Monson said.
"Another officer had to jump out of the way to avoid being hit," the report states. The ensuing chase lasted about 10 minutes, "all while the driver's side door was nearly completely off the vehicle."
The chase ended near 4500 South and 300 West when a Unified police officer was able to successfully deploy tire spikes, Monson said. Even after he was in custody, Suthar had trouble staying awake and appeared to be under the influence of drugs, according to the report.
Suthar was booked into jail for investigation of a number of charges, including DUI — which would be his third if convicted — possession of drug paraphernalia, reckless endangerment and failing to stop at the command of police officer.
Court records show Suthar has an extensive criminal history of mostly burglary and drug related crimes. In addition to his new charges Tuesday night, he had several warrants out for his arrest.
One warrant was for failing to comply with his probation from a 2015 conviction of attempted burglary, according to court records. Another was for failing to comply with terms of his probation from a drug distribution conviction, also in 2015. Another warrant was for a probation violation stemming from a 2015 conviction of attempted theft. Suthar has other drug-related convictions in 2005, 2006, 2010 and 2013, according to court records.