Man arrested after hitting state trooper on I-55

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by KMOV.com staff

KMOV.com

Posted on May 25, 2014 at 8:46 AM

Updated yesterday at 3:58 PM

(KMOV.com) – A Missouri Highway Patrol trooper remains in serious condition, a day after being struck by an alleged drunk driver in south St. Louis County.

According to police, Trooper Jeremy Potocki, 33, was standing outside a vehicle he had just pulled over on southbound Interstate 55 near Union Rd when he was struck by another car around 8:30 a.m.

"It's very dangerous," said former road construction worker Kevin Chowning. "I used to work road construction and I used to flag traffic and a lot of people don't pay attention."

Police say the driver who hit Potocki was Michael Haley, 43, of Arnold. Haley is currently fighting a ticket for driving on a suspended license. Authorities arrested Haley on suspicion of drunk driving.

Missouri Law requires drivers to get over a lane to give officers on a traffic stop a safe buffer zone.

Potocki, a 10-year veteran of the force, was transported to the hospital in serious condition. He has since been released. 

"We're working just inches from people," said Sergeant Al Nothum of the Missouri Highway Patrol. "Vehicles driving 60, 70, 80 miles an hour and when you think about it, every day we are inches from death." 

 

 

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