Police sirens

A man who police found unconscious at the wheel was charged with aggravated assault after he suddenly awoke, hit the gas and ran into a pedestrian, authorities said. 

Johnstown police charged Jason Michael Thomas, 33, of Fairfield Avenue, with two counts of aggravated assault and one count each of reckless endangerment and possession of drug paraphernalia. He also faces a summary traffic violation.

According to a criminal complaint, police said they found Thomas on Sunday unconscious behind the wheel of a Chevrolet sedan at Napoleon and Walnut streets. Police said Thomas didn’t move when they tapped on the window, so they smashed the glass and touched him on the shoulder. Thomas awoke suddenly and hit the gas peddle and ran over a pedestrian’s leg, the complaint said.

An officer then chased the moving vehicle about 30 feet. Police were able to stop the vehicle and forcibly remove Thomas from the driver’s seat, the complaint said. One officer suffered an arm injury and was treated at the scene by West End EMS. The pedestrian declined medical treatment.

Thomas was taken to Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center for a blood test and the car was towed from the scene.

Thomas was arraigned by on-call District Judge Kevin Price, of Johnstown, and sent to Cambria County Prison after failing to post 10% of $50,000 bond.

Patrick Buchnowski is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. He can be reached at 532-5061. Follow him on Twitter @PatBuchnowskiTD.

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