Woman who was passenger in SUV that injured El Cajon officer arrested

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Two El Cajon Police Department vehicles shows on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. 28-year-old Los Angeles resident Keani Flores, who is suspected of participating in an assault that injured an El Cajon police officer, was arrested on Dec. 21, authorities said.

EL CAJON, Calif. (CNS) – A woman suspected of participating in an assault that injured an El Cajon police officer was arrested, police said Monday.

Keani Flores, 28, of Los Angeles, was arrested Sunday in Oakhurst in Central California by El Cajon Police Department detectives and members of the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force, according to Lt. Randy Soulard, the El Cajon Police Department’s public information officer.

Flores was the passenger in a vehicle driven by another suspect, David Pangilinan, and actively participated in the Dec. 14 assault of ECPD Officer Nick Cirello, Soulard said.

Officers responded about 8:30 a.m. last Monday to a call of a vehicle blocking the roadway with the driver asleep or unresponsive, police said. Upon arrival, officers found the vehicle partially obstructing the roadway with the driver and a passenger asleep inside.

When officers woke the occupants, the driver provided identification for someone other than himself and officers began to investigate, police said.

The driver suddenly started the vehicle and began to put it into gear. Cirello attempted to detain the driver and keep him from fleeing, police said.

Cirello was trapped in the vehicle and dragged for a distance as the driver fled. Cirello was still partially inside the suspect’s vehicle when he was struck by another vehicle that was traveling in the roadway.

Cirello was ejected from the vehicle and sustained significant injuries, police said.

Flores and Pangilinan fled the San Diego area and were located in Oakhurst. Pangilinan was observed in the Oakhurst area by officers who attempted to conduct a traffic stop, police said.

Pangilinan fled and remains at-large. He was described as a 5-feet, 6-inches tall, 200 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.

Cirello has been released from a hospital and is expected to fully recover from his injuries.

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