Man accused of hurting Attleboro officer arraigned at hospital

Crews repair a utility pole Saturday morning after a police car crashed into it during a violent struggle between an officer and a suspect. (Matthew Beltz/WPRI)

ATTLEBORO, Mass. (WPRI) — The suspect in a violent incident that seriously injured an Attleboro police officer faced a judge from a hospital bed after he was unable to make a scheduled arraignment in court earlier on Monday.

Cristofer Veloz, 19, attempted to commandeer a police cruiser Saturday before the vehicle crashed into a utility pole on County Street, police said. That officer, later identified as Patrolman Joseph Daday, suffered serious injuries from the incident but is now reportedly recovering at home with his family.

“Their legs were outside the vehicle. The suspect was able to put the car into drive and accelerate down the road with both parties hanging out of the car,” Sargent Richard Campion said. “He survived. It was obviously a life and death situation.”

Veloz was unable to appear in Attleboro District Court Monday morning and was instead arraigned from a Sturdy Memorial Hospital bed Monday afternoon. Police said Veloz is facing multiple charges, including two counts of assault and battery on a police officer, two counts of carjacking and operating under the influence of drugs.

“Right away Officer Daday noted that something was wrong with the male. He was incoherent, was not responding to his commands,” Campion said.

Daday originally responded to the scene following a report of a man flagging down passing cars. police said. Veloz rushed Daday and attempted to take the police cruiser before backup arrived, according to police.

“He basically was able to prevent the guy from getting custody of the car. Which would have been: Man intoxicated or under the influence of narcotics speeding off in a cruiser towards Pawtucket — probably wouldn’t have been a good outcome,” Campion said.

Police said Daday is recovering from his injuries but will likely be out of work for a significant amount of time.

Veloz was ordered to be held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing Friday.