Seattle cop killed in pre-dawn accident - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Seattle cop killed in pre-dawn accident

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SEATTLE (AP) - A young Seattle police officer in service less than a year died instantly today when his patrol car was struck in an intersection by a car running a red light. That from police spokesman Sean Whitcomb following a news conference with Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske.

The officer, whose name was not disclosed, was rushed to Harborview Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. Whitcomb says the officer was working alone doing a routine patrol when the accident occurred about 4 a.m.

The officer's vehicle - northbound on 23rd -- entered the intersection on a green light. Whitcomb says the patrol car was struck in the middle of the intersection by a second vehicle -- a Yukon eastbound on Yesler -- that was speeding and crossed against the light.

Whitcomb says responding officers who discovered the victim was a friend and colleague were devastated.

Police initially believed the driver of the Yukon had fled on foot, but now Whitcomb says the woman found in the car is believed to have been the driver. She was being treated for non-life-threatening injuries at Harborview. Booking was expected later in the day.

Police also thought someone had fled the scene but now believe the woman driver was alone in the car.

After she is treated, she likely will be booked for investigation. Whitcomb says investigators believe excessive speed and possible use of drugs and-or alcohol may have been factors.

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