Giovanni Cotto shot a Pennsylvania State Trooper after wrecking at the end of a high-speed chase.
Giovanni Cotto shot a PA State Trooper during and at the end of a high-speed chase.

A 17-year-old thug that led Pennsylvania state troopers on a high-speed chase before wrecking into a school bus and getting into a firefight with them is potentially looking at decades in prison.

A teenager has been charged in connection with the shooting of a Pennsylvania State Trooper on I-676 in Center City Philadelphia.

The suspect, identified as 17-year-old Giovanni Cotto, has been charged, as an adult, with Criminal Attempt to Murder of the 1st Degree (3 Counts), Aggravated Assault (3 Counts), Assault of Law Enforcement Officer (3 Counts), Simple Assault (3 Counts), Fleeing and Attempting to Elude, Recklessly Endangering Another Person, Possessing Instruments of Crime, and several Firearms Act Violations.

He was formally arraigned by video Wednesday morning, and bail was set at $3 million.

The 17-year-old suspect returned to State Police Barracks in Wynnefield Heights after being treated for injuries sustained in the Tuesday morning incident.

Cotto was one of four people in a vehicle pulled over for expired registration. After all four men exited the vehicle and one was placed in handcuffs, Cotto jumped into the driver’s seat and led troopers on a chase down I-76 and then on I-676.

State Trooper Patrick Casey got in front of the escaping criminal and attempted to slow the vehicle down, at which point Cotto rammed the Troopers vehicle from behind. Cotto then pulled up beside Trooper Casey and began shooting at him. Cotto then wrecked into the back of a school bus, emerged from the vehicle, and began shooting at the State Troopers converging upon him. Casey engaged Cotto through the windsheild of his vehicle, and was hit by Cotto as they traded shots.

The bus and the car Cotto were driving burned after the collision. Thankfully there were no students on the bus, and the driver was uninjured.

shots
Trooper Casey’s vehicle. The cluster of shots in the center were outbound fire from the Trooper. The shots to the side closest to the driver’s side door are presumed to have been inbound from Cotto.

Cotto them apparently ran out of ammunition and surrendered.

Cotto’s father, Hector Cotto, then offered the expected excuses/platitudes we’re come to expect from the parents of violent thugs:

The suspected gunman’s father Hector Cotto walked out of police barracks Tuesday evening telling reporters his son is a good boy who just made a mistake.

“He’s a good kid. I don’t know. He made a wrong decision today,” the father said.

The father said he does not know where his son got the gun or if it belonged to the teen or someone else.

I’d be stunned if this was Cotto’s first run-in with the police, or the first time that he’s used a gun criminally.