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Deputies say Tampa woman dragged state trooper half mile at 50 mph

TAMPA — Deputies on Thursday arrested a 20-year-old woman who, they said, dragged a trooper who was dangling from the window of her car for nearly half a mile as she sped away from a traffic stop.

Veronica Renee Elder, 20, of Tampa was pulled over Tuesday evening for driving more than 20 mph over the posted speed limit on Summerfield Boulevard, near Ambleside Boulevard.

Officials said Elder did not have a driver's license and gave them false information when the trooper asked her to identify herself.

The trooper, who was not immediately identified, asked Elder to get out of the car, a 2005 Toyota RAV 4. She refused.

As he tried to open the Toyota's door, officials said, Elder stepped on the accelerator.

The trooper, whose arm became pinned in the window, was dragged for nearly half a mile at speeds up to 50 mph, officials said.

Eventually, Elder slowed, allowing the trooper to fall away from the car, officials said.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, Florida Highway Patrol and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement had been searching for Elder ever since.

Elder was found Thursday at 43rd Street and Hillsborough Avenue. When authorities attempted to arrest her, officials said, Elder again tried to escape. But this time, she didn't get very far.

Elder was arrested and charged Thursday with battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting arrest with violence, felony fleeing and eluding, and driving with a suspended license.

The officer who had been dragged by the Toyota was treated for minor injuries at a local hospital.

Deputies say Tampa woman dragged state trooper half mile at 50 mph 09/23/11 [Last modified: Friday, September 23, 2011 11:45pm]

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