LAGRANGE TWP. — A trooper with the Elyria Post of the Highway Patrol was injured this morning after responding to a call at approximately 7:16 a.m. just outside the village of LaGrange.
The State Highway Patrol was called to check on the welfare of a man later identified as Cornelious L. Carey Jr., a 44-year-old resident of Elyria, who was walking in the middle of the roadway on Diagonal Road near Whitehead Road.
The trooper, whose name was not provided, found the man near the intersection of Diagonal Road near Biggs Road. Carey, troopers said, was confrontational and struck the trooper in the face.
A LaGrange Township woman who was driving by the scene called 911, telling the operator she saw the man “brutally beating the officer.”
The woman, who did not wish to be named, said the suspect bit half of the trooper’s ear off.
“I was screaming at the man to get off the officer and the suspect wouldn’t let the officer go,” she said. “I felt helpless. The officer kept yelling in his radio for help.”
The mother of three said she wanted to jump out of her vehicle to help the injured officer, but she was too terrified of the suspect.
The struggle continued for several minutes until additional officers arrived. Carey was charged with felonious assault and taken to the Lorain County Jail.
Felonious assault is considered a second-degree felony, which typically carries a sentence of 2 to 8 years in prison. If the victim is a police officer, however, the offense is elevated to a first-degree felony punishable by 3 to 11 years in prison.
The trooper was taken by ambulance to University Hospitals Elyria Medical Center with serious but non-life threatening injuries. He was undergoing surgery at about 1 p.m.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.