Charges: Man stole truck, ran it into streetcar, attempted to steal police car

A Richfield man is facing multiple criminal charges in connection with a collision between a light rail train and a truck earlier this week in Minneapolis.

A Metro Transit police officer was at the intersection of Washington Avenue Southeast and Huron Boulevard on Tuesday morning when he saw the driver of a speeding utility truck make a sharp left turn from Washington Avenue onto Huron Avenue, according to a criminal complaint.

RELATED: Truck and Metro Transit train collide near Stadium Village station

As the truck turned, its side tires hit the center median and it nearly hit a pedestrian. At this time, a light rail train was crossing Huron Avenue and collided with the truck. The officer responded to the accident and the truck driver began to flee.

According to the complaint, the man – identified as Cohen Jajuanza Jacobs, 31 – ran behind two women, grabbed a bottle of water from one of their backpacks and continued running while the officer held him down. continued. As the officer approached and ordered Jacobs to the ground, Jacobs allegedly pulled out a box cutter with the blade taut and lunged at the officer. When the officer pulled out, Jacobs climbed into the driver’s seat of the patrol car.

The officer used his Taser but Jacobs again lunged at the officer with the box cutter, the complaint adds. However, the officer was able to kick Jacobs off the team before he could leave.

As other officers responded, Jacobs then reportedly tried to get into another vehicle, but the driver pulled away and wouldn’t let him in. The other officers used their Tasers on Jacobs but noted that they appeared to have no effect on him.

Eventually an officer managed to knock Jacobs to the ground and he was arrested.

Officers learned that the truck Jacobs was in when he collided with the light rail had been driven away moments earlier from a nearby Holiday gas station.

The witness who was nearly hit by Jacobs told officers he believed Jacobs may have intentionally tried to hit the train because of the way he was driving.

Authorities estimated that the damage to the tram cost between $3,000 and $4,000 to repair, which is expected to take two to three weeks.

Jacobs is charged with second degree aggravated robbery, second degree assault with a dangerous weapon and theft of vehicle. If convicted, the charges carry maximum penalties ranging from five to 15 years in prison and up to $30,000 in fines.

His first court appearance is set for Friday afternoon.

Jose P. Rogers