Suffolk Highway Patrol Officer Joseph Goss jumps into moving car to make Leandra's Law arrest on LIE

A Suffolk police officer jumped into a moving vehicle on the Long Island Expressway Thursday to make an arrest under Leandra's Law, authorities say.



Highway Patrol Officer Joseph Goss saw the woman driving 20 mph in the eastbound lane near exit 70, police say. He attempted to pull her over, but she refused to stop.



Goss saw a child in the rear passenger seat and, police say, "was able to slow down traffic so they would not get rear-ended." That's when the woman slowed to around 5 mph.



Goss pulled ahead, parked on the right shoulder and jumped into the moving vehicle through the passenger side window, according to authorities.



Goss says he did what he did because he is a dad himself.



Police identified the driver as Maria Lagatta, 37, of Farmingville. They say her 22-month-old daughter was in the back seat. Neither of them were injured in the incident.



Police have charged Lagatta with driving while ability impaired by drugs, endangering the welfare of a child and aggravated driving while intoxicated with a child passenger 15 years old or younger -- better known as Leandra's Law.



Lagatta's bail was set at $20,000 cash or $40,000 bond.


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