A Round Lake man who crashed into a police squad car, injuring an officer, and fled the scene was arrested in Waukegan after he tried ditching a loaded handgun, authorities said.
A Waukegan police sergeant was in the area of the 1900 block of Grand Avenue in Waukegan around 4 p.m. Saturday.
The sergeant notified dispatch that he had been involved in a vehicle crash, according to Waukegan Deputy Police Chief Joe Florip.
The sergeant reported that he was unable to exit his vehicle due to its damage and that the driver of the offending vehicle was fleeing the area on foot.
Officers responded and were able to locate and arrest the fleeing suspect a few blocks away, Florip said.
The suspect driver of the offending vehicle was identified as Eric Alcantara, 19, of Round Lake.
Alcantara threw a loaded semi-automatic handgun in the area of Grand Avenue and Westmoreland Avenue while he was fleeing, Florip said.
The Waukegan Police Department Major Crash Unit (MCU) was called to investigate the incident.
Investigators said that the police sergeant was traveling eastbound in the 1900 block of Grand Avenue in a fully marked 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe police vehicle.
A 1994 Chevrolet Camaro, believed to be driven by Alcantara, was traveling westbound in the same area on Grand Avenue.
The Camaro lost control and struck the Tahoe and a 2012 Toyota Camry, which was also traveling eastbound.
The police sergeant involved is a 19-year veteran of the Waukegan Police Department.
The sergeant was transported to an area hospital with minor injuries and has since been released. The sergeant is expected to return to work Monday.
Alcantara was also transported to an area hospital with minor injuries and was released back into police custody.
There were two occupants in the Camry. Neither required medical attention and it is believed all involved were wearing seatbelts.
Alcantara has been charged with two counts of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, leaving the scene of an accident, operating an uninsured vehicle, improper traffic lane usage and failure to reduce speed.
Alcantara remains held in the Lake County Jail on a $100,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court again on July 6.