The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

April 23, 2014

Teen: I was just trying to get away, not hurt anyone

By Francis Scarcella
The Daily Item

— SUNBURY — A Shamokin teen driver shot by a city police officer who feared being run over following a late-night high-speed chase said Wednesday he never intended to hurt anyone.

Naheem Reams, 18, testified during a Northumberland County Court hearing to decide whether charges against him should be sent to juvenile court. He was 17 in June when the incident occurred.

Reams was charged in August as an adult with six counts of aggravated assault stemming from the June 5 chase in Sunbury that ended at Chestnut and South Front streets with Reams being shot in the abdomen.

Reams pleaded not guilty to all of the offenses in September.

The pursuit began on North Fifth Street at about 1 a.m. when police approached a car while clearing the road for street sweeping.

Reams took off in a “reckless manner” for no apparent reason, police said.

Reams was wanted by Northumberland County Juvenile Probation, but police did not know that at the time.

The chase lasted fewer than 10 minutes and ended when Reams was shot in the abdomen by a single bullet. Three city officers were involved in the pursuit and one shot Reams, saying Reams had tried to run him over.

Northumberland County District Attorney Tony Rosini argued Reams should be charged as an adult.

Reams, represented by Sunbury attorneys Tim Bowers and Kymberley Best, testified that he did not try to run over the officer, that he tried to go around the policeman when he attempted to continue fleeing after he was cornered on South Front Street.

Northumberland County President Judge William Wiest heard testimony and will issue a written decision.