AUSTIN, Texas — ***WARNING***: This story includes a graphic image some might find disturbing.
It may take months before an Austin police officer gets back on the streets after suffering serious injuries while chasing a suspect in South Austin.
The chase involving Officer Keith Allison and 29-year-old Cory Zurovetz happened Tuesday morning just outside Ascension Seton Southwest.
According to an arrest affidavit, police said they had received reports that a man had scraped a sign with a knife and pointed a gun at someone.
When Officer Allison spotted Zurovetz walking south near the hospital's east entrance on FM 1826, he commanded him to stop.
"'Don't walk away from me! Austin Police! Don't walk away! I'll think you're evading,'" Officer Allison said, according to the affidavit.
As Officer Allison attempted to detain Zurovetz, he kept resisting and Officer Allison threatened to Taser him, police said. Zurovetz managed to break away from Officer Allison's grasp and ran toward the entrance of the hospital.
It was near the hospital entrance where police said Zurovetz fell to the ground. As Officer Allison followed after him, he fell into a drainage ditch, hitting the concrete around him at a high speed.
According to Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday, who visited Officer Allison at the hospital on Friday, he suffered several broken bones and dislocated shoulders. He may also require facial reconstruction.
"The rehabilitation could take a month, if not a year. We just don't know yet," Casaday told KVUE."It was a brutal injury and a lot of orthopedic type injuries, and it's just going to take time."
Casaday suspects it could take months before Officer Allison returns to work.
Police eventually caught Zurovetz and charged him with evading arrest causing serious bodily injury to a law enforcement officer.
Casaday told KVUE the suspect was known to officers as living in the woods behind the H-E-B in the Oak Hill area of South Austin.
"A lot of these people are drug-addicted. They have psychological issues. They have alcohol issues. The city isn't telling us how they're going to house these people," he said.
Texas Department of Public Safety records show Zurovetz has previously spent time in jail for drug possession and criminal trespass.
Officer Allison's injuries could have been prevented, according to Casaday, had Zurovetz complied with the officer's commands.
"We've been talking about 'just comply' for years," Casaday said. "It's going to be a very long rehabilitation process."
Casaday expects Officer Allison will remain in the hospital for at least another week or so. It's possible he may require more surgeries.
Zurovetz is in the Travis County jail on a $50,000 bond.
PEOPLE ARE ALSO READING: