Police: Man in custody after shooting at officer, chased through four counties

First court appearance scheduled for Sunday

Martin County Sheriff's deputies say a man is in custody, suspected of shooting at a police officer and leading law enforcement on a chase through four counties.

Deputies say the suspect, 36-year-old Samal Hammond, shot at a police officer in the Miami-Dade area.

He was pursued by officers, driving through Broward County, Palm Beach County then Martin County before he was stopped through the use of "stop sticks" in the northbound lanes of Interstate 95 near the Kanner Highway exit.

"We have a lot of collateral damage... I don't know how many vehicles hit the stop sticks. And matter of fact, we have law enforcement vehicles that hit the stop sticks," said Martin County Sheriff William Snyder.

Deputies say armed SWAT team members tried to get him out of the car, and Hammond refused to surrender.

After a 45-minute standoff on the highway, Hammond was convinced to surrender by police.

Fortunately no one was injured.

"It did look like we had one of those classic situations where the suspect looked like he wanted the police to kill him," said Snyder.

The incident started before midnight late Friday.  Hammond was arrested at 1:40a.m. Saturday.

Investigators say police found a woman screaming in the road between Miami Gardens Drive and Ives Dairy Road.

When they arrived they say Hammond pulled out a gun and exchanged fire with a sergeant.

Martin County Sheriff William Snyder confirms that no officer was hurt in the exchange.

According to Christine Weiss, spokeswoman for the Martin County Sheriff's office, the photo of Hammond shown was taken during questioning because he refused to have his picture taken earlier.

Weiss says Hammond has a 132-page rap sheet and is currently being questioned.

Martin County will charge Hammond with possession of a stolen vehicle and with providing false information to law enforcement.

Hammond was booked into the Martin County Jail, Weiss said. He will make his court appearance Sunday in Martin County, she said.

He will eventually be transferred back to Miami-Dade county to face charges there.

Law enforcement officers in the four counties are currently working jointly on the case.

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