Florida man admits to hitting two U.S. Air Force MPO’s with his car at Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst
A Florida man who struck two U.S. Air Force Military Police Officers with his car at Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst in Burlington County, New Jersey, has admitted to his assault.
U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced the guilty plea Tuesday of Hal Wander, 25, of Port Charlotte, Florida, to an information charging him with assault on two federal officers using a deadly and dangerous weapon -- a motor vehicle.
The incident occurred on November 16, 2020, when Wander felt inclined to speed into Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst with no desire to stop at the checkpoint.
Two MP's hopped in their respective police vehicles and chased after Wander.
One of the MP's put his car in front of Wander in an effort to stop him from going any further, but Wander kept on going, right into the police vehicle.
The other MP set up behind Wander, trying to stop him there as well, but Wander kept going, this time putting his vehicle in reverse, and into the other police vehicle.
Wander's vehicle then stopped.
The first MP, whose vehicle Wander struck, then reached into the vehicle and tried to turn off the ignition but Wander then started driving forward again, but this time with the MP on the vehicle, and thus dragged the officer several feet along the vehicle before he was able to set himself free.
Wander kept on going, aggressively driving -- until he struck a utility pole and came to a stop.
Then, he was arrested.
If convicted of the assault charge, Wander pleaded guilty too, he could face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, when he is sentenced on June 15, 2022.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elisa T. Wiygul of the Criminal Division in Camden.
Defense counsel: Benjamin J. West Esq., Assistant Federal Public Defender, Trenton.