EFFINGHAM, Ill. – The Illinois State Police arrested a man Sunday after he allegedly grabbed a trooper’s arm and dragged him while driving in Effingham, Illinois.
ISP District 12 Effingham said on Facebook that a trooper was working on a DUIE (Roadside Safety Check) when he saw “what appeared to be a pistol between the driver seat and center console of a vehicle that he was checking.” The driver, 21-year-old Marcus Pocrnich, did not comply with the trooper’s commands, so “the trooper attempted to gain control of the pistol.” Pocrnich and the trooper then struggled for a period of time until “the driver grabbed the trooper’s arm and accelerated, driving away and dragging the trooper approximately 25 yards down the roadway.” At that point, the trooper had freed himself.
Troopers told Pocrnich to stop, but he continued to drive away.
ISP District 12 Troopers, officers from the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office, officers from the Effingham City Police Department, and deputies from the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office pursued the vehicle. Eventually, they took Pocrnich “and all occupants of the vehicle safely into custody.”
The dragged trooper sustained non-life-threatening injuries. He was treated at a local hospital. He has been with the ISP for 3.5 years.
The Effingham County States Attorney charged Pocrnich with two counts of aggravated battery to a police officer, one count of aggravated fleeing and eluding, and one count of resisting a police officer causing injury. The Effingham County States Attorney also charged Pocrnich with numerous traffic citations.
The investigation is ongoing.