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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The case of a Carnegie man hitting a Pittsburgh Police officer with his SUV in April will head to court.

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Patrick Thomassey is the defense attorney for 63-year-old Willard Hopkins.

“We didn’t make anyone testify. There is a video of what occurred here, so there wasn’t much we could do with it at this level, naturally, so we sent it up to court, and we’ll try to resolve it in common pleas court,” Thomassey said.

Surveillance video shows what happened on April 20 in the parking lot of the Giant Eagle Market District in Shadyside.

Watch the surveillance video —


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Hopkins was behind the wheel of a maroon SUV. The driver’s door was opened when Detective Jack Klaczak approached to ask Hopkins about shoplifting items from the store.

Klaczak was knocked to the ground when Hopkins put the car in reverse and accelerated quickly. Klaczak was working private security, but was in full uniform when Hopkins tried to get away.

That wasn’t the end, though. Klaczak had to jump out of the way as Hopkins sped away, nearly missing the officer and a second person. The officer suffered minor injuries.

“He feels awful. He was on some meds that night. He shouldn’t have been driving,” Thomassey said. “His recollection of what occurred is not good, but thankfully, the officer, from what I understand, was not hurt seriously. He was hurt and I’m not minimizing it, but there is no permanent injury, so hopefully we can resolve this matter in court.”

(Photo Credit: Pittsburgh Police)

Hopkins will be in court for another appearance in a couple months.

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“The next step will be a formal arraignment in September and then it will be assigned to a trial judge and we’ll have a pre-trial conference,” Thomassey said. “After that, we’ll set a trial date and try to resolve the case.”