Driver charged after striking Nashville police motorcycle

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Charlie Galindo, 20.(Photo: MNPD)

A 20-year-old man was arrested Tuesday morning after authorities said he used his Dodge Charger to hit a Metro police motorcycle and then speed across Nashville in an effort to avoid being caught.

The brief police chase that started on Interstate 40 ended when the suspect — identified by police as Charlie Galindo — parked his car in the Grandview Heights neighborhood. Authorities initially said the chase ended in a crash.

The chase started about 9:30 a.m. when West Precinct Motorcycle Officer Danny Johnson was traveling on I-40 and a speeding Charger passed him, according to a statement released by police.

The officer activated his blue lights to stop the car, police said, but Galindo refused to pull over and accelerated even faster.

Due to the high-speed chase, the officer turned off his emergency equipment and continued on I-40.  He exited the interstate at Old Hickory Boulevard and noticed the Charger stopped in traffic at the bottom of the off ramp.

Police say the officer parked his bike in front of the Charger, got off, approached the driver’s door of the Charger and ordered Galindo to get out.

Galindo, with the door open, appeared to be complying when he suddenly veered the Charger into the motorcycle and took off, causing the officer to jump out of the way. The officer, police say, was not hurt.

Galindo struck another vehicle as he fled, got back onto I-40 and sped eastbound.

Police chase ends after the driver of a Dodge Charger struck a Metro police motorcycle bike. (Photo: MNPD)

A police helicopter that flew into the area and began an aerial pursuit spotted the Charger merge onto I-440 and exited at Nolensville Pike.

The Charger turned from Melrose Avenue to Winford Avenue where the driver parked in a parking lot and attempted to walk away.  Police personnel in the helicopter watched his every move and directed ground officers to Galindo, who was arrested on Winford Avenue.

Police say a small amount of marijuana was found inside the Charger.

Reach Natalie Neysa Alund at 615-259-8072. Follow her on Twitter @nataliealund.

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