Sylva Police Officer Mark Bennett was taken by WestCare ambulance to Harris Regional Hospital Sunday afternoon (Feb. 1) around 3 p.m. after being struck by a vehicle at Quality Plus gas station.
Bennett had injuries to his leg, shoulder and head from the incident, Sylva Police Chief Davis Woodard told The Herald. He was treated and released.
Christine Ann Taber, 49, of Sylva is in custody following the incident. She has been charged with assault with a deadly weapon, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill or inflict serious injury, two counts of resisting public officer and second-degree trespass. Her bail is set at $100,000, secured.
Earlier in the day Sylva Police officers had responded to the Comfort Inn about a non-guest (Taber), who had been banned from the property for causing a disturbance.
During the SPD’s second visit to the property, Taber threw a beer bottle that narrowly missed Sgt. Doug Farmer’s head when Farmer attempted to speak with her, Woodard said Monday. Taber fled the parking lot in a silver Volkswagen, and Bennett followed in his patrol vehicle with lights and siren on. Taber traveled south on N.C. 107 before turning into the Quality Plus parking lot. Bennett approached Taber’s vehicle and advised her to exit.
Taber put her vehicle in reverse and accelerated quickly, striking Bennett’s patrol car. Taber then put her vehicle in drive and drove forward, dragging Bennett until he fell to the ground. Taber returned to the Comfort Inn, where she was apprehended after a short foot chase.
The incident is under investigation and additional charges against Taber are pending, Woodard said.
Sylva Police were assisted by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, the N.C. Highway Patrol and the State Bureau of Investigation. Sylva Fire Department and WestCare EMS also responded to the scene.