LAKE COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) Early Wednesday morning an Indiana State Police trooper was investigating a single car crash on I-80/94 in northwest Indiana when another driver crashed into his parked squad car.
The incident unfolded at 2:30 a.m., in the westbound lanes near the 12 mile-marker.
Trooper Riley Hieb had parked his squad car on the inside shoulder at that location with its emergency lights fully activated. A blue 2009 Chrysler 300 traveling westbound at the same location drove onto the inside shoulder and struck the rear of the parked police car at a high rate of speed.
Trooper Hieb was not injured as he was outside of his patrol car actively investigating the previous crash. The impact caused the police car to be pushed off the roadway into a grassy area while the Chrysler became disabled partially in the left lane.
The Chrysler’s engine compartment then caught fire while the driver was in and out of consciousness. Due to the Chrysler’s doors being locked, troopers broke the passenger window and pulled the driver to safety fearing the vehicle could become fully engulfed.
The driver, Latresha C. Williamson, 42, from East Chicago, IN, was transported to Northlake Methodist Hospital and later transported to Southlake Methodist hospital for treatment of severe injuries.
Ms. Williamson refused a chemical test for intoxication at the hospital. As a result, a search warrant was requested and later granted by a Lake County Superior Court Judge. Alcohol and/or drugs are believed to be a factor in this crash. Formal charges are pending review by the Lake County Prosecutor’s Office.