NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE (CBSMiami) – A motorcyclist wanted for injuring a Broward Sheriff Deputy and leading police on a high speed chase into Miami-Dade County is hospitalized and in police custody.
The motorcyclist crashed his silver motorcycle at the intersection of Okeechobee Road and the Florida Turnpike around 9:30 a.m.
Authorities identified him as 31-year-old Michael Ciriago of Hollywood and he was arrested once before in 2004 for eluding police, records show. He served one year in prison.
Records show Ciriago has an extensive history of arrests. He’s been arrested before for other cases of fleeing and eluding, driving the wrong way, burglary, grand theft, resisting arrest, kidnapping, dealing in stolen property and aggravated battery.
It all started when BSO deputies were conducting a routine traffic enforcement at Royal Palm Boulevard and Weston Hills Boulevard in Weston, according to BSO’s Keyla Concepcion.
“They pulled over a motorcyclist on Weston Road. The motorcyclist stopped. One of the sergeants approached him and once he was talking to the suspect he fled from the scene, injuring our deputy, at which time deputies did fire shots at the motorcyclist,” Concepcion told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench.”
This could have turned into a very serious situation.
One of the shots that was fired pierced the windshield of a P.T. Cruiser being driven by an employee of Celtic Communications. That unidentified employee had just left a customer, according to his boss, Michael Crory. “That bullet missed his head by inches,” Crory told D’Oench. “He is home and was shaken up.”
BSO said Ciriago led officers on a chase from Weston to Northwest Miami-Dade but crashed trying to make a U-turn at the intersection of Okeechobee Road and the Florida Turnpike.
“Deputies began pursuing the motorcyclist until the helicopter picked him up and he struck an unmarked BSO deputy unit and after that he crashed into a MDPD marked unit,” said Concepcion, adding, “We knew he had injured one of our deputies. We kept track of him until our helicopter picked him up. Our deputies go out on the road every day and day in and day out, they never know exactly what they are going to encounter.”
The Miami-Dade Police officer was not hurt.
Ciriago was airlifted to the Ryder Trauma Center. Charges against him are pending.
Sgt. John Kelly, a 22-year veteran, was the BSO Sergeant who was struck by the suspect in Weston. He suffered minor injuries and was treated and released from the Cleveland Clinic on Weston Road.
Miami-Dade Police Benevolent Association President John Rivera doesn’t understand why suspects run from police. He told D’Oench that he was alarmed by this incident.
“Why would you run and put yourself in danger like that. Look at the chase all the way from Weston, all the people that were in danger all the way from Weston all the way down into Dade County and wherever it would have stopped and stopped here. Not only just the police officers, look at the people that were in traffic that they’re lives were in danger as well,” said Rivera.
We’ve been saying for a long time not to run from the police that’s the best and safest thing so you go home at night,” said Rivera.
BSO said Ciriago will face charges including the attempted murder of a law enforcement officer and fleeing and eluding.