A Polk County Police Officer following up on a hit-and-run investigation over the weekend fought with an elderly suspect wielding a loaded handgun, and despite a minutes-long wrestling match neither was shot.
Polk County Police Chief Kenny Dodd reported that Officer Brooks Van Dyck was well bruised in the face after he fought with 80-year-old suspect Teunis Schoonhoven, of 85 Adamson Drive, Cedartown.
Dodd said that Van Dyck had gone to follow-up on a reported hit-and-run wreck committed by Schoonhoven on Collard Valley Road, and found him at the Adamson Drive address after the other driver was able to record the tag number of the vehicle that got away.
Van Dyck was greeted at the door by Schoonhoven, who held a .32-caliber pistol in his hand and raised it toward the officer after opening the door.
"He didn't have time to draw his weapon, so he grabbed the gun and began wrestling with the suspect for 3 to 4 minutes on the ground," Dodd said. "Officer Van Dyck was eventually able to place the suspect in custody on his own."
Both men were treated for minor wounds and bruises on Saturday following the noon incident at Polk Medical Center.
"I'm glad that he (Van Dyck) was able to get out of the situation safely," Dodd said.
Schoonhoven remains in the Polk County Jail without bond on charges of felony aggravated assault, felony obstruction of law enforcement officers, and misdemeanor charges of driving under the influence, for the hit and run and failure to yield when entering roadway.