An alleged heroin dealer holding his 2-year-old daughter and 200 stamp bags of heroin scuffled with Mt. Pleasant Borough police on Tuesday, then tossed the bag of suspected drugs as he ran with the girl in his arms, according to police.
Orlando Holt, 22, of 221 West Smithfield St., Mt. Pleasant, feigned that his toddler needed immediate treatment for an asthma attack after he was pulled over by Assistant Police Chief Daniel Zilli about 7 p.m. in an alley behind 232 W. Main St.
"He was acting crazy," Zilli said on Wednesday.
Zilli pulled over Holt's 1994 Chevrolet Caprice because of a suspicious registration plate, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed before Mt. Pleasant District Judge Roger Eckels.
Zilli said he recognized Holt "because he did not have a valid driver's license."
After the traffic stop, Holt ignored Zilli's repeated commands to stay in the car, grabbed his daughter out of the back seat and said he needed to get her to his home a block away because she was "suffering an asthma attack."
"As this officer approached Holt, he then began running toward his residence with his daughter," Zilli wrote.
Zilli grabbed Holt's pants, according to the affidavit, but Holt broke free and ran in circles around his car as the officer chased.
Holt then ran through the parking lot of the Village Restaurant in the 200 block of West Main Street, jumped over a fence and ended up behind Big Dog's Gym. Zilli said in the police report that during the chase he saw Holt discard a large plastic bag.
Zilli caught up with Holt again, and the struggle ensued. Because Holt was holding the girl, Zilli said he could not force the suspect to the ground or use pepper spray for fear of injuring the toddler.
"This officer again attempted to handcuff Holt, and Holt again began resisting," Zilli wrote.
The child was placed in the back of Holt's vehicle while Zilli called for police backup. Holt asked to call someone to care for the girl, and Zilli handed Holt the telephone, Zilli said.
"Holt never had any conversation with anyone on the phone but stated someone was coming to get his daughter," Zilli said.
Holt then struggled again with Zilli and attempted to grab his daughter from the car, police said. Holt was subdued as police backup arrived from Mt. Pleasant, Scottdale and Westmoreland County Sheriff's deputies.
The toddler was placed in custody of a relative, police said.
Police recovered the bag, which had suspected heroin they said has a street value of about $5,000.
Zilli suffered a minor injury to his left knee, a cut to his right hand, and scrapes and bruises on his arms.
Holt was arraigned before Eckels on charges of possession of heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia, harassment, endangering the welfare of children, reckless endangerment, simple assault, driving on a suspended license, unauthorized use of a registration plate and operating a vehicle without proper registration and title. He was jailed after failing to post $50,000 bond set by Eckels.
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