VIDEO: Trooper injured following violent struggle with armed suspect on side of I-71

I-Team

ASHLAND, Ohio (WJW) — An Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper was treated at a local hospital following a struggle with a man holding a gun.

The incident happened Tuesday morning on I-71 in Wayne County. Trooper Jeremy Burgett of the Ashland Post of the state patrol, spotted what he thought was a disabled vehicle on the side of the road and stopped to help. 

“When he approached the vehicle, he saw glass on the ground and the suspect was leaning inside the car,” said OHSP Lt. Ray Durant.

A few moments later the suspect started to walk away from the trooper.

“Eventually the man started to put his hand into the front of his pants where he was going for a weapon, and the officer noticed it,” Durant said. “And the a scuffle ensued.”

Video still courtesy Ohio State Highway Patrol

Several drivers going past the area called 911 to report the incident.

“I saw a state highway patrol looks like he is in a confrontation with a driver on the side of the road,” one caller reported. “They look to be wrestling around on the ground.”

The fight lasted nearly two minutes. The trooper was eventually able to handcuff the suspect. 

“His training kicked in and he did an excellent job,” Durant said. “This could have turned deadly.” 

Durant notes the suspect had a fully-loaded gun. Both the suspect and trooper sustained minor injuries. 

Trooper say the suspect Jeffrey Clay, of Centerville, Tennessee, is due in court soon. 

“He is facing multiple charges, “ Durant said. “Felonies including resisting, and carrying a concealed weapon.”

Additional charges could be filed soon. 

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