An Oklahoma police officer was stabbed in the eye with a shard of glass by a fleeing suspect, intense bodycam footage shows.
Oklahoma City cops released the footage on Friday that shows residents flagging down the officer after witnessing Christopher McPheeters, 32, hurl an object at another police cruiser.
Only identified as Officer Page, the cop leaves his vehicle and walks up to McPheeters as he begins to walk away. “Come here,” Page tells McPheeters. The command is ignored, and the suspect starts to run. The encounter took place on March 18.
The officer chased McPheeters across the street before taking him to the ground. A violent struggle ensued. Footage shows the suspect cutting the officer multiple times in the face and stabbing him in the eye with a jagged piece of glass.
Despite the limited vision and a bloody face, Page proceeds to defend himself. Ultimately, McPheeters is subdued and taken into custody.
“Hey, he cut me with a piece of glass,” a breathless Page tells other cops on the clip.
The footage was released by Oklahoma City Chief of Police Wade Gourley, who noted a significant increase in attacks on law enforcement officers in recent years. FBI statistics showing a nearly 60 percent jump from 2020 to 2021 were cited.
Gourley said Page nearly lost his eye after he was severely injured.
“He could have been killed,” Gourley said. “When Mr. McPheeters was interviewed, he stated that his intent was to kill the officer. You’ll see in the video — this was a very violent encounter. I just want the public to understand a little bit more of what our officers are dealing with.”
Gourley said the suspect had a warrant for his arrest and had been previously convicted of assault and battery on a police officer.
“When our officer went out on this individual, he had no idea what he was encountering,” Gourley said. “All he knew is he had an individual that he was being flagged down by some folks and this individual was obviously in some type of situation where he was angry and just wanting a confrontation.”
Gourley said that three Oklahoma City cops have also been wounded by gunfire in the past two years. One of those officers was shot in their ballistic vest by a suspect sentenced to six years in prison as part of a plea deal.
“He could spend as little as three to four years in prison for shooting at a police officer,” Gourley said. “Our officers are having to deal with a wide variety of very difficult situations, and oftentimes the individuals that they deal with are violent.”
On Tuesday, McPheeters remained in custody at the Oklahoma County Detention Center on charges including assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and aggravated assault and battery on a police officer. It’s unclear if he’s obtained an attorney.