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Ohio man charged with assaulting Pa. state trooper during traffic stop

Pennsylvania State Police have charged an Ohio man with assaulting a trooper during a traffic stop Sunday morning on Interstate 80 in Tobyhanna Township.

At 9:07 a.m., a trooper from the Pennsylvania State Police at Stroudsburg initiated a traffic stop on a 2020 silver Hyundai Santa Fe bearing Ohio registration along interstate 80 westbound at mile marker 288.2 in Tobyhanna Township.

Police said during the traffic stop, the driver was speaking at the rear of the vehicle, and the driver said he needed his jacket from the vehicle.

The driver walked toward the vehicle, ignoring the trooper’s commands to remain outside the car, and he re-entered the vehicle.

As the trooper was attempting to remove the driver from the car, the driver put the car in drive and tried to flee.

The trooper was physically engaged with the driver inside the driving compartment and forced the vehicle off the roadway and into the woods.

After the vehicle came to rest in the wooded area, the driver continued to resist the trooper’s attempts to take him into custody. An additional trooper on scene deployed his Taser, and the driver was taken into custody.

The driver, identified as Rashawn Hawari-Rasululla, 37, of Cleveland, Ohio, was transported to the Pennsylvania State Police Stroudsburg barracks and charged with felony aggravated assault on law enforcement officer, flight to avoid apprehension, prohibited from possessing a firearm, recklessly endangering another person and resisting arrest.

He will be taken to the Monroe County Correctional Facility, where he will be arraigned. His name is not being released until he is arraigned.

The trooper involved in this incident sustained a minor injury. He was transported to Lehigh Valley-Pocono in East Stroudsburg, where he was treated and released.

This investigation continues.

A Pennsylvania state trooper forced a vehicle off the roadway during a traffic stop after the driver tried to flee on Sunday. COPYRIGHT LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
Pennsylvania State Police escort a suspect Sunday afternoon from the Stroudsburg barracks. He is being charged with assaulting a trooper during a stop on Interstate 80. AMY LEAP/TIMES NEWS