Philadelphia police on Monday identified the man who allegedly stole an ambulance Friday night in Northeast Philadelphia, setting off a chain of events that included a police shooting; a circuitous, crash-filled, hour-long chase; and, ultimately, the man’s arrest.
Mark Giwerowski, 42, of Wissinoming, was to be charged with robbery, carjacking, and a host of related counts, police said.
Giwerowski was in critical condition at Jefferson Torresdale Hospital. He was shot by Officer Timothy Kelley, a 27-year veteran, who fired at Giwerowski after he allegedly struck Kelley with the ambulance.
About 9 p.m. Friday, police said, firefighters responded to a report of a medical emergency and possible assault at a hotel on the 7600 block of Roosevelt Boulevard. A woman was helped by hotel security after leaving a room and screaming; Giwerowski, who left the same room shirtless, was treated by firefighters for injuries to his face.
But Giwerowski became combative with the firefighters, police said, and after police officers arrived, he “ran toward the medic unit” in the parking lot. After getting in the vehicle, he allegedly drove it in reverse and struck Kelley, then it collided with a police car and nearly struck another cop.
Kelley fired into the driver’s-side door of the ambulance, police said. Giwerowski drove away on the Boulevard and evaded police for more than an hour, allegedly striking at least four vehicles as he was pursued by police cars and a helicopter. The pursuit was shown live on local TV.
State police used “spike strips” to flatten the ambulance’s tires, police said, and Giwerowski was arrested on the 2700 block of Tolbut Street after a city officer used a Taser to subdue him before placing him in handcuffs.