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Hagerstown police cruiser damaged in two-vehicle crash

August 03, 2011

A Hagerstown police cruiser was heavily damaged in a two-vehicle accident Saturday night.

Capt. Mark Holtzman said the cruiser was traveling west on Dual Highway at about 10 p.m. when it was struck by an eastbound vehicle that was making a left turn onto Cleveland Avenue.

"There was extensive damage," Holtzman said. "It might be a total loss."

The driver of the cruiser, Officer Chuck Johnson, was responding to a nonemergency call, Holtzman said.

Johnson was taken to Meritus Medical Center east of Hagerstown as a precaution

Holtzman said that the driver of the other vehicle, Kelly M. Valentine, 19, of Hagerstown, was not injured.

He said Valentine was cited for failure to obey a traffic-control device.

The cruiser struck and severed guide wires that were attached to a utility pole in the median near the intersection, Holtzman said. A wooden yield sign also was broken and fell on the red and blue emergency lights on top of the cruiser.  

Holtzman said both of the drivers were wearing seatbelts.

Fully-equipped police cruisers cost about $27,000, Holtzman said. Both the police cruiser and the vehicle driven by Valentine were insured.

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— By Dan Dearth

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