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SASEBO NAVAL BASE, Japan — A USS Essex sailor might face additional charges after being indicted last week in an alleged hit-and-run incident involving a Japanese police officer, according to Sasebo city police.

Local police asked prosecutors Friday to charge the sailor with hit and run, driving without a license, property destruction and interfering with officers in the line of duty, police said.

Seaman Apprentice Brandon R. Jackson, 21, was turned over to Japanese police Tuesday after being indicted on a charge of auto theft. Sasebo Naval Base referred questions on the new allegations to Japanese authorities Friday.

Jackson is accused of stealing a van Dec. 7 and dragging a police officer who attempted to intervene. The officer stopped Jackson in the early hours of a Sunday morning.

Jackson allegedly pulled away and dragged the 22-year-old officer about 30 feet, causing minor cuts and bruises and ripping off his pants, according to police.

Police said Jackson also damaged the front bumper of a police vehicle while making a getaway.

Both city police and the Navy searched for the driver. All ship and shore commands checked their personnel during the search, base spokesman Charles Howard said.

On Jan. 7, military police told Japanese authorities they had identified Jackson as a possible suspect and he was questioned.

An auto theft charge was referred to the Nagasaki District Public Prosecutors Office in Sasebo on Jan. 16 and Jackson was indicted last week, the police spokesman said.

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Hana Kusumoto is a reporter/translator who has been covering local authorities in Japan since 2002. She was born in Nagoya, Japan, and lived in Australia and Illinois growing up. She holds a journalism degree from Boston University and previously worked for the Christian Science Monitor’s Tokyo bureau.
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