Case of runaway squad car being investigated

By Jim McCabe on July 31 at 7:18am

The Morgan County Sheriff’s Department is investigating an incident that happened earlier this month when a squad car nearly ran several people over.

Chief Deputy Mike Carmody says a deputy was responding to a loud music complaint at around 2:15 a.m. on July 20th on Maple Creek Lane in Woodson.

State police reports indicate the car was parked and running with the keys in the ignition and an arrested man in the back seat. An unknown person entered the unlocked vehicle and allegedly shifted it into drive.

The squad car rolled forward, reportedly struck three parked cars and two people, and clipped another vehicle that was driving in the opposite direction. That driver was able to avoid a head-on collision.

The deputy was able to catch up to the squad car and put the vehicle back into park.

The arrested man, 20-year-old Dallas McDade, was sitting handcuffed in the back of the squad car. McDade had been arrested for disorderly conduct, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, possession of drug paraphernalia and illegal alcohol possession.

Carmody says McDade was still in the car after it was taken out of park and was injured as a result of it rolling forward. McDade was taken to Passavant Area Hospital and then transferred to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield. He’s since been treated and released.

Carmody says the sheriff’s department is still investigating the incident to try and figure out who put the car in drive and whether it was intentional.

Carmody adds at least one of the people that was hit by the car sought medical treatment the next day.

State police were asked to investigate to avoid a conflict of interest by the sheriff’s department.

Correction: Dallas McDade’s age was originally reported as 23. He is 20.