Police: Maquoketa Man Thinking Iowa City Officers Are Al-Qaeda Crashes Smart Car into Squad Cars

An officer had to leap out of the way to avoid being hit by the oncoming vehicle.

IOWA CITY, IA - A Maquoketa man was charged with multiple crimes after allegedly sideswiping multiple police vehicles with his Smart car.

According to Iowa City Police complaints, several police vehicles were parked at the 100 block of South Linn Street during an assault investigation on Sunday at 1:54 a.m. Then, a red Smart car allegedly driven by Andrew Vincent Lange, 22, of Maquoketa was seen traveling north down Linn Street with no front license plate and no headlights on.

Police say the vehicle then veered toward the squad cars, sideswiping two of them and forcing a police bicycle officer to leap out of the way to avoid getting hit. The bicycle was struck as well, according to police.

The driver stopped his vehicle soon after and a man, later identified as Lange, was forced from the vehicle and into handcuffs, injuring one officer's wrist, according to the complaint. Lange allegedly told police that he thought he was in Afghanistan and he thought the officers were members of al-Qaeda.

Lange allegedly had bloodshot and watery eyes, slurred speech, and was emitting an odor of alcohol, according to police. He refused all intoxication tests.

For the incident, Lange faces charges of drunken driving and interfering with official acts with injury.

There is an Andrew Lange from Maquoketa listed in the University of Iowa student directory, but he did not respond to an email message seeking comment.

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