MANHUNT CONTINUES FOLLOWING ASSAULT ON POLICE OFFICER IN WEST PENN TOWNSHIP; RESIDENTS TOLD TO LOCK VEHICLES

WP Police Officer Assaulted, Search, SR309, West Penn, 9-2-2015 (2)
TamaquaArea.com

STATUS UPDATE 4: The Blue Mountain was reopened around midnight. Two state police vehicles could be seen staged near the scene around 2 AM. Police are still looking for a Hispanic male, 6’2″ to 6’4″ tall, 240-260 pounds, wearing dark t-shirt, tattoo under one eye, blue jeans that go below your knees, and possibly in a dark-colored Nissan Maxima with license plate (FUK 1011 or FUK 0011) that might have been painted over. Anyone with information is asked to call state police at 570-874-5300 or 911.


A West Penn Township police officer was airlifted after being injured during a traffic stop this evening (Wednesday, September 2, 2015) along West Penn Pike (SR309) on the Blue Mountain. Other online news articles identify the officer as Sergeant Melissa “Missy” Ruch.

TamaquaArea.com File Photo / April 2013 / Was Sgt. Boyer then.
TamaquaArea.com File Photo / April 2013 / Was Sgt. Boyer then.

State Police stated she was assaulted while approaching a disabled vehicle. The incident occurred around 5:15 PM near the top of the mountain.
Responding to an emergency radio ID activation, law enforcement officers found officer Ruch about 20-foot down an embankment. Rescuers utilized a Stokes basket to carry the officer up the embankment.
As of 7:30 PM, the entire Blue Mountain (West Penn Pike) remained closed as dozens of local, county and state police officers search the area for the person or persons who fled after assaulting the officer. A state police helicopter is also being used in the search.
A PennSTAR helicopter landed on a field at the intersection of SR309 and SR895 in Snyders to transport officer Ruch to Lehigh Valley Hospital at Cedar Crest with non life-threatening injuries. 
Multiple residents who live in the area told TamaquaArea.com that State Police officers were driving around telling them that an “officer was assaulted and to make sure their vehicles and doors are locked.”

Pictured is a TamaquaArea.com file photo of Ruch with K-9 Argus.
TamaquaArea.com File Photo / Missy with Argus.

A comment from a family friend of the officer on Facebook reads, “The officer pulled someone over. They assaulted them (may have been stabbed don’t know), and threw them down the mountain. They don’t know who the car was because they took off and it was a dead license plate…”. A follow-up comment from the friend reads, “Coming from the officer’s family: They were not hit or stabbed… Thrown down the bank.” (That information is not confirmed.)
Responding in addition to State Police, were Schuylkill County Sheriff, Tamaqua Police, Rush Township Police, West Penn Fire Company, West Penn Fire Police, Penn Mahoning Ambulance, Lehighton Ambulance, and numerous others.
As of 2 AM, there is no official information regarding a possible suspect or arrest.


UPDATE 4: The Blue Mountain was reopened around midnight. Two state police vehicles could be seen staged near the scene around 2 AM. Police are still looking for a Hispanic male, 6’2″ to 6’4″ tall, 240-260 pounds, wearing dark t-shirt, tattoo under one eye, blue jeans that go below your knees, and possibly in a dark-colored Nissan Maxima with license plate (FUK 1011 or FUK 0011) that might have been painted over.
Officials are encouraging local residents to lock their homes and vehicle doors.
If you have any information or useful details regarding the incident or whereabouts of the suspect, call state police at 570-874-5300 or 911.


(Click HERE to view a 2012 Times News story I wrote about Melissa and her K-9 officer Argus.)


Click HERE to view Pocono Record story. Credited TamaquaArea.com.
Click HERE to view Morning Call story. Credited TamaquaArea.com.
Click HERE to view Republican Herald story. Credited TamaquaArea.com.
Click HERE to view City of Allentown: Police Chaplaincy Corps Facebook post. Credited TamaquaArea.com.
Click HERE to view GoHeroes.us website story. Credited TamaquaArea.com.
Click HERE to view FreePublic.com story. Credited TamaquaArea.com.


TamaquaArea.com Video:


TamaquaArea.com Photos at intersection of SR309 and SR895:


Below photos (courtesy Andy George) show heavy presence of police at top of the Blue Mountain:.

6 comments

  1. ALL of our police officers need to have cameras on their uniforms and on their dashboards front and back with wide angle lenses. We need proof and identification so when they kill or injure and officer and take their weapons, someone can find them and they can be arrested with PROOF that they were not off shopping with ‘MOMMIE”

    Like

  2. You’ve got three sanctuary cities in Pennsylvania, right? Then you attract illegal alien felons!
    But that’s OK with me, I guess. If we are not going to deport them, it’s better to have them in your state than mine…

    Like

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