Cheektowaga police pursue warrant suspect in front-end loader

Chronicle file photo of a Cheektowaga Police car.
Chronicle file photo of a Cheektowaga Police car.

CHEEKTOWAGA – The Cheektowaga Police arrested a private plow driver after he led police officers on a low-speed chase in a front-end loader Sunday morning.

James R. Malek, 49, of Lloyd Drive, was clearing snow at the Walmart parking lot around 1 am when police officers attempted to serve an arrest warrant.

Assistant Chief of Police Michael Sliwinski tells Cheektowaga Chronicle that Mr. Malek refused to exit the equipment and drove off to avoid officers when they approached him.

A very slow vehicle pursuit around 10-15 mph ensued in which Mr. Malek ended up in the Consumer’s Square parking lot on Union Road.

After he tried to ram a police car, he would soon try to escape police in a foot chase.  He was apprehended by the police a short time later on Ellsworth Drive – a street west of his home.

During the foot pursuit, an officer suffered an arm injury.  The officer was treated at Erie County Medical Center.

Mr. Malek was charged with Reckless Endangerment 1st, a D Felony, Resisting Arrest, Unlawful Fleeing, Reckless Driving, and numerous Vehicle and Traffic Law violations.

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