Man accused of hit & run that critically injured SFPD officer appears in court

The San Francisco man accused of running over an SFPD bike patrol officer during a police chase appeared in court for the first time this afternoon.

Bail for Marquise Johnson, who also goes by the name Willie Flanigan, was set at $10 million.

No cameras were allowed inside the courtroom for today's arraignment, but outside the courtroom, dozens of police officers lined the hallway in a show of strong support for Officer Elia Lewin Tankel who is currently in critical condition at Zuckerberg SF General Hospital.

The 32-year-old is still fighting for his life after being run over by an SUV, allegedly driven by Johnson, while Tankel was riding his bike Wednesday.

"It is very difficult for these officers because they know it could have been any one of them," said Marty Halloran, president of the SF Police Officers' Association.

Johnson granted an exclusive interview to KTVU's Tara Moriarty yesterday where she asked the 50-year-old if officers were chasing him.

"I don't know what they were doing," responded Johnson. "I know the police version of events are to be questioned."

Johnson faces a slew of charges from attempted murder, to evading police to felony hit and run with injury.

"This is undeniably and unequivocally a terrible tragedy...our hearts go out to the officer who was injured," said Alex Lillian, Johnson's attorney.

When Judge Sharon Reardon set bail at $10 million Johnson yelled out in the courtroom, "Isn't that extreme? Who can afford that- that's homeless?"

When Judge Reardon refused to lower bail, Johnson interrupted her, saying loudly, "That's racist!"

"We do have the presumption of innocence and the right to a fair trial in this country, I think it's hard to keep that in mind, especially as information comes out in drips and and drabs but my hope would be that people can reserve judgment. Ultimately criminal cases are about intent," said Lillian.

But Tankel's fellow officers say whether Johnson's actions were intentional or not, it won't help their friend; a newlywed and five-year veteran of SFPD.

"It's heart wrenching.. to sit there with the family the parents and see them struggling with their emotions and having the officer in the ICU ward," said Halloran.

While in court, Johnson also blurted out that he wanted the FBI and the Justice Department involved in his case.

Based on his jailhouse interview with KTVU, Johnson's defense may center around his claim that he suffers from PTSD, fallout he believes from an alleged police beating back in 2014.

His next court appearance is set for November 7.