SANTA CRUZ COUNTY (BCN)—A man who assaulted a California Highway Patrol sergeant at a Soquel gas station in unincorporated Santa Cruz County early this morning was
found with a substantial amount of cash and methamphetamine, an agency spokesman said.
Daniel Brandon Harpe, 39, of Aptos, was arrested on suspicion of assault on a peace officer, being a felon in possession of a loaded firearm and possession of drugs for sale, CHP Sgt. Grant Boles said.
The sergeant stopped for a snack at a Quik Stop convenience store at 3204 Porter St. near Soquel San Jose Road around 6 a.m., when the clerk asked him to check on someone who had been sitting in a car nearby for about 90 minutes, Boles said.
The sergeant spoke with the car’s occupant, later identified as Harpe, who he learned was an early jail release and on parole, according to Boles.
The sergeant attempted to handcuff Harpe and conduct a search, but the suspect attacked the officer that lasted a few minutes, Boles said.
Harpe was able to run away, but was quickly tackled by a good Samaritan and stopped by a backup officer who deployed a taser on him, according to Boles.
The 39-year-old man was found with a loaded handgun, methamphetamine with an estimated street value of $14,000 and about $17,000 in cash, Boles said.
The suspect was also found with a digital scale investigators believed was used for drug trafficking, according to Boles.
Harpe told officers he had stopped at the gas station because his car broke down, Boles said.
The assaulted sergeant was left with scrapes to his hands and knees and small bruises on his face, Boles said.
The sergeant, a nine-year officer with the CHP, was treated at Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz and released, according to Boles.