Pelham, AL – A Pelham police officer was seriously injured on Saturday morning when she was struck by a suspected drunk driver who was passing an accident scene where she was working.
The incident occurred at about 1 a.m. on July 1 when officers and medics were on the scene of a crash on Interstate 65 near exit 252, WBMA reported.
A wrong-way driver going at a high rate of speed had slammed into two other vehicles, head on.
Pelham Police Officer Elizabeth Minter responded to the crash scene to assist with traffic control, WBMA reported.
Officer Minter, who is still in training, was standing with Pelham Police Officer Mike McGee and both officers were wearing reflective safety vests and standing next police vehicles with all of their lights activated, according to a press release from the city.
Police said the officers were using flashlights to redirect traffic around the crash scene when a suspected intoxicated driver ignored the backed-up traffic that was being diverted and the police cars blocking the roadway as they sped southbound.
Officer Minter was struck by the speeding vehicle and hit so hard that she flew out of her boots, according to the press release.
Police said that one of her boots, a flashlight, gun magazines, her radio, and other equipment landed across four lanes of traffic and two exit ramps.
The wounded hero was attended to immediately by Pelham police and Pelham firemedics who already on the scene for the earlier wreck, the press release said.
She was transported to University of Alabama – Birmingham Hospital with “numerous significant injuries.”
“The Pelham Fire Department, Pelham Police/Fire Communications, Alabaster Police Department, Alabaster Fire Department, and Shelby County Sheriff’s Department provided tremendous support during this event and assisted with other calls in the City of Pelham, and we are thankful for their partnerships,” Pelham Police Chief Brent Sugg told reporters.
Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) troopers assisted Pelham police in taking the driver who ran over Officer Minter into custody, according to officials.
Police said the driver appeared to be under the influence and showed signs of impairment but blood tests results had not yet come back.
The driver has not yet been charged, WBMA reported.
The press release said ALEA will be heading up the investigations into both of the crashes.
Officer Minter is a rookie officer who is still in training, WBMA reported.
She is a single mother and sole provider for three children, according to a GoFundMe set up to assist with the family’s expenses.
Officer Minter was awaiting surgery on Saturday and remained in serious-but-stable condition, WBMA reported.