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Posted on: July 8, 2018

Bethlehem Police Officer Struck by Vehicle Apprehending Fleeing Shoplifter

                On Saturday, July 7, 2018, at 2:00PM a Bethlehem Police Officer was in the parking lot of the Glenmont Walmart taking a report for a property damage crash.  At this time the officer observed a Walmart loss prevention officer attempting to apprehend a woman who had just shoplifted from the store in an unrelated incident.  The officer ran towards the fleeing suspect in the parking lot, as the suspect got into her vehicle.  The officer signaled for the vehicle to stop and approached the front of the vehicle. 

            The suspect then put the vehicle in drive and drove forward striking the officer.  Despite being struck, the officer approached the vehicle on the driver side and was able to convince the suspect to stop the vehicle.  The suspect was taken into custody in the parking lot. 

            Bethlehem Police arrested Wendy M. Downey, 58, of Castleton.  Downey was charged with felony counts of Assault in the Second Degree, and Reckless Endangerment in the First Degree, misdemeanor counts of Petit Larceny, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 4th Degree, Resisting Arrest, Reckless Driving, Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Vehicle in the Third Degree, Operating While Registration/License Suspended, and violations of Unregistered Motor Vehicle, Uninsured Motor Vehicle, Unsafe backing, and Failing to Comply with an Officer.

            The injured officer was treated by Delmar-Bethlehem EMS and transported to St. Peters Hospital for a knee injury.  Downey was arraigned in the Town of Bethlehem Court by the Honorable Judge Ryan Donovan and remanded to the Albany County Jail in lieu of $25, 000 bail.  A preliminary hearing in Bethlehem Court has been set for Tuesday, July 10, 2018, at 5PM.