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Waynesboro Chase - October 7




On October 6, 2008, at approximately 8:30 pm, an officer of the Waynesboro Police Department stopped a 1989 Toyota station wagon on a parking lot adjacent to Poplar Avenue and Broad Street. The officer intended to talk to the driver about a defective brake light and the expired license plates on the vehicle. Upon contact with the driver, later identified as Ian Daniel Kasdan, 26 years-of-age, whose address is listed as 126 West Grattan Street, Harrisonburg, Virginia, the officer asked for a driver’s license and registration which Kasdan allegedly did not provide. Instead, Kasdan allegedly identified himself with a false driver’s license number and, when the first number did not check out, allegedly provided a second false driver’s license number. The officer had also noticed that the car was running but had no key in the ignition switch. The officer attempted to take Kasdan into custody but Kasdan allegedly emerged from his car with a tire iron in his hand and threatened to strike the officer. The officer retreated, drew his pistol and called for additional help from nearby officers. A standoff ensued. During the standoff, Kasdan allegedly told the officer he “was not going back to jail”. As the first backup officer arrived on the scene, Kasdan allegedly retreated to his car and, jumping in, put the car in reverse and struck the police car being driven by the officer who made the initial stop. Kasdan allegedly then sped off with other officers in pursuit.

The pursuit wound its way through several neighborhoods, namely, the Tree Streets, Downtown, Port Republic Road, Wayne Hills and New Hope Road before arriving at the Kate Collins Middle School parking lot. Kasdan allegedly drove onto the lot and around the lot with officers in pursuit. At one point, two officers riding in the same car, Paul Johnson and Dominick Zambrotta, attempted to block the path of Kasdan’s car. Kasdan allegedly rammed their police car in the passenger’s front side, disabling the police car. Kasdan momentarily came to a stop. Kasdan allegedly then accelerated backwards and rammed another police car driven by Officer William Russell being positioned behind Kasdan’s car. Kasdan allegedly then attempted to ram a third car at which time the Patrol Shift Commander gave the order to aggressively stop Kasdan.

After being rammed by Kasdan, Officer Paul Johnson had exited his disabled vehicle and was on foot on the parking lot of Kate Collins School. Kasdan drove to within six to ten feet of Officer Johnson who fired two gunshots from his pistol at the left front tire of Kasdan’s vehicle. The gunshots did not stop Kasdan’s vehicle which exited the Kate Collins School parking lot shortly thereafter.

Kasdan allegedly drove west on Ivy Street followed closely by a Waynesboro officer who used his police car to intentionally bump Kasdan’s vehicle and spin it around in the street as Kasdan approached the intersection of Ivy Street and Hopeman Parkway. Other officers from the Waynesboro PD and Augusta County Sheriff’s Office were able to block the path of Kasdan’s car. Before Kasdan could escape again, Officers and Deputies broke the passenger window and used a TASER to subdue Kasdan and take him into custody.

Kasdan is charged with three felonies arising from his alleged assault of Officers Zambrotta, Johnson and Russell. In addition, Kasdan is charged with felony hit and run and felony attempting to elude police. Also served on Kasdan was an arrest warrant arising out of a probation violation from Harrisonburg/Rockingham County. Kasdan appeared in Waynesboro District Court on October 7, 2008 for a bond and advisement hearing. As a result of that hearing, Kasdan is being held without bond at the Middle River Regional Jail. Detective Corporal Kevin Miller has been assigned as the investigating officer for this incident.

Waynesboro Officer Dominick Zambrotta was injured when his police car was allegedly rammed by Kasdan. Zambrotta was treated and released at Augusta Medical Center for injuries to his ribs. Two other officers sustained minor injuries.

Waynesboro Officer Paul Johnson was uninjured when the police car he was riding in with Zambrotta was rammed by Kasdan. Officer Johnson was placed on paid administrative leave, in accordance with Waynesboro PD policy, following the shooting incident. An internal investigation into the shooting is being conducted by Captain J. W. Oliver, head of Waynesboro PD’s Investigations Division.

Deputy Chief William R. Maki
Waynesboro Police Department
250 South Wayne Avenue
Waynesboro, VA 22980

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