2 Pinal deputies assaulted during traffic stops - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

2 Pinal deputies assaulted during traffic stops

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Raul Hernandez-Lopez (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office) Raul Hernandez-Lopez (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office)
William Thomas (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office) William Thomas (Source: Pinal County Sheriff's Office)
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FLORENCE, AZ (CBS5) -

Two Pinal County Sheriff's Office deputies have been assaulted during traffic stops in the past two days, PCSO said. 

A deputy patrolling in the area of Tomahawk Road and Southern Avenue conducted a traffic stop Tuesday evening after a record's check showed the owner of the car had his license revoked.

The driver, identified as William Thomas, 35, of Apache Junction, tried to flee by making erratic turns and speeding. He finally stopped, got out of the vehicle and tried to run into a nearby home, PCSO said.  

As the deputy tried to handcuff him, Thomas hit him several times in the face, sheriff's investigators said. Apache Junction police helped the deputy restrain the man. YCSO said Thomas yelled obscenities and smelled of alcohol.

Thomas was treated for abrasions suffered during the struggle. The deputy received abrasions to his hands and arms but did not need medical treatment.

Thomas was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on charges of aggravated assault on an officer, resisting arrest and unlawful flight.

On Monday, a K-9 deputy patrolling westbound Interstate 10 initiated a traffic stop on a pickup for traffic violations. The driver pulled over and handed the deputy a Mexican Electoral Card identifying the driver as Raul Hernandez-Lopez, 24, of Mexico.

When the the deputy asked the the man to get out of his vehicle, Hernandez-Lopez then started to accelerate his pickup truck toward the deputy and back onto the roadway, PCSO said. 

The deputy jumped into the dirt shoulder, just missing the truck's rear tires. The deputy chased Hernandez-Lopez, who quickly bailed from the truck and into the desert.

The deputy secured a passenger as other responding deputies chased Hernandez-Lopez into the desert and apprehended him.

Hernandez-Lopez was laughing and taunting deputies during the arrest and during the booking procedure, YCSO said. He was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on charges of aggravated assault on a police officer and failure to stop.

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