A California Highway Patrol cruiser
A California Highway Patrol cruiser. Photo by Chris Stone

A motorist who had been involved in a predawn collision on Interstate 15 in Scripps Ranch drove off Monday after being approached by a California Highway Patrol officer, dragging the lawman down the roadway and leaving him injured.

The officer reached into the driver’s car to try to turn off its engine when the motorist began to flee the scene of the accident on the northbound side of the freeway at Miramar Way shortly after 4:30 a.m., CHP spokesman Salvador Castro said.

After being dragged down the interstate for a few moments, the patrolman was able to free himself, and the man sped away. Medics took the officer to a hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries, Castro said.

The suspect, 37-year-old Jesse Dylan Cesmat, was arrested later in the day in Valley Center, where he lives. He was booked into county jail on suspicion of assault, forcibly resisting a police officer and hit-and-run causing injury.