Authorities in Angels Camp are investigating why a Washington man was walking in traffic with two small children who were not his before turning on police Wednesday afternoon.
The man, witnesses reported, was also ranting and hitting cars as they drove by on S. Main Street, even breaking off a side-view mirror on one vehicle, one driver told police.
When police officers and two Calaveras County sheriff's deputies arrived to the disturbance, the man, later identified as 24-year-old Soloman Fleming, picked up one of the children and ran in the lane of traffic, Teresa Pry, spokesperson for Angels Camp Police Department, said. As Fleming jumped down an embankment onto Park Avenue with the child, officers were able to get the child away from Fleming who then struck one of them in the face several times.
Pry said Fleming resisted officers' efforts to take him into custody and grabbed pepper spray away from one of them. A deputy helped restrain the suspect and handcuff him.
The two children were not hurt and were returned to to their mothers.
The officer who suffered facial injuries was transported to a local medical enter, treated and released, Pry said. The two deputies were taken care of at the scene for minor injuries.
Fleming was also checked medically and then booked into Calaveras County Jail on allegations of kidnapping, mayhem, resisting a peace officer, resisting a peace officer and removing a weapon other than a firearm, battery on a peace officer with serious injury, and child endangerment.
It wasn't clear yet why Fleming had the children with him.