SILVER SPRING, Md. (WJZ)—Officer struck. Police say a drunk driver from Baltimore hits a Montgomery County officer while he’s directing traffic, and it’s all captures on camera by a news helicopter.
Investigative reporter Mike Hellgren has that incredible video and why the officer’s reaction is drawing scrutiny.
The dramatic scene unfolded Tuesday night on the Capital Beltway. Maryland State Police shut down several lanes for a bad accident.
As a Montgomery County police officer was directing traffic at the crash, a drunk driver veered out of the channeled lane and into a lane closed off to vehicles, grazing the officer.
“As the video shows, the driver veers out of the traffic lane into an area that hadn’t been opened yet. He registered a 0.22 BAC on the intoximeter,” said Captain Paul Starks, Montgomery County Police.
Police say 58-year-old Reginald Eugene Taylor from Baltimore was behind the wheel of the Hyundai.
When Taylor stopped, the 20-year-veteran officer who was hit– Francis McDonough—appeared upset. He is seen trying to get into Taylor’s car. Moments later McDonough pushed Taylor onto the pavement.
McDonough’s conduct is now under scrutiny.
“Our internal affairs are looking at the circumstances surrounding this event,” Starks said.
Taylor lives in an apartment complex on E. Biddle Street. Neighbors say he is well regarded.
No one answered his call box, but a friend who asked not to be identified agreed to speak with WJZ. He says he’s never seen Taylor drink and drive.
“He’s nice going. Speak to you every morning,” he said. “Really surprised.”
McDonough was not severely injured in the accident. He was transported to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and has since been released.
“He’s not at work today. I don’t know when he will be,” Starks said.
What was said on the scene is inaudible. But a firefighter can be seen escorting McDonough away from the scene.
Taylor faces a DUI for a blood alcohol concentration almost three times the legal limit. He was also issued a traffic citation for failure to control speed to avoid a collision. He was released after processing at a district station.
The investigation continues.
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