NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A Northampton police detective was injured after being struck by a car Wednesday morning.
Police Capt. John Cartledge told 22News that Detective Brendan McKinney was conducting a traffic stop of a moped on New South Street, when he was hit by the vehicle shortly before 9:30 Wednesday morning.
Cartledge said that at the time, the officer was standing outside the cruiser. Shortly before the incident, another officer had pulled over behind McKinney to assist with the traffic stop.
“This is never easy for any officer especially officers who were there on the scene. We’re just hoping to move forward and hopefully he’ll be okay,” said Cartledge.
After being treated at the crash site by police and firefighters, McKinney was taken to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield. Cartledge said that as of Wednesday afternoon, they have received word that McKinney is expected to recover from his injuries.
The driver who struck McKinney, identified at this time only as a 61 year-old man from Easthampton, is now being charged with driving under the influence of drugs, in addition to other charges. Police will not release the suspect’s name until their investigation is complete.
Northampton resident Jan Dion said drivers tend to speed on New South Street, “There are a lot of crashes in this area as you come into town. It seems as though maybe people aren’t slowing down quickly enough. In the mornings people are usually travelling pretty fast. The police have been making a serious effort to slow people down through the intersection.”
A statement on the Northampton Police Department’s official Facebook page reads:
“Incidents like this are a reminder of the dangers that our officers face each day. We’re incredibly thankful for the quick response of our officers on scene and members of NFR who both provided medical aid. Also, thank you to our dispatchers for getting needed services to the scene and for managing the many calls that were coming in. We’re also grateful for the calls that we have received from police departments in surrounding communities offering their support and willingness to assist if need be. Finally, thank you to so many of our citizens who let us know that they were thinking about our officer today. We greatly appreciate everyone’s support.”
McKinney is a five-year veteran of the Northampton Police Department.
Police officers are using their new drones to investigate the details of the accident. New South Street was shut down into the early afternoon while the Northampton Crime Scene Services and Accident Reconstruction Team worked.