Naked pursuit: driver attacks cop with vacuum cleaner head

A NAKED man led police on a 25-kilometre pursuit through Ballarat yesterday before he struck a police officer with a vacuum cleaner fitting.

Police used batons and capsicum spray to arrest the man, who stopped in the car park of McDonald’s in Sebastopol.

The 47-year-old  South Australia man was wanted for various offences.

 He was detected travelling at 155km/h in a 100km/h zone before the pursuit began in Learmonth on the Sunraysia Highway at 11.43am.

The chase was soon joined by seven other police cars from Ballarat, including Highway Patrol units, who took the lead in the pursuit.

The man led police into Ballarat and through Wendouree, Redan and Sebastopol before coming to a stop at the McDonald’s outlet at the corner of Albert and Hertford streets.

At one point, the man waved a vacuum cleaner fitting out of his vehicle’s sunroof.

A witness managed to film the pursuit coming through a roadwork zone and noticed the driver waving the vacuum part at police cars following behind.

“I couldn’t believe it. I just thought ‘why is he holding a vacuum cleaner?’,” the man said

The Courier reader used his phone to film the man driving past during the chase.

“He was laughing as he went past — it was really weird,” he said.

Ballarat Criminal Investigation Unit Detective Senior Sergeant David Hermit said when the man finally stopped at McDonald’s, he resisted arrest by wielding the vacuum cleaner fitting like a club and managed to strike an officer who received minor injuries.

After a dose of capsicum spray and use of police batons, the man was taken into custody more than 30 minutes later.

He was admitted to Ballarat Health Services Base Hospital for treatment to injuries he sustained during his arrest.

The man was expected to be interviewed and charged.

He will appear at the Ballarat Magistrates Court at a later date.

jordan.oliver@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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