Vehicle collides with unmarked Salisbury Police car

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 13, 2011

By Nathan Hardin
SALISBURY — Two women were taken to the hospital Tuesday morning after their vehicle struck an unmarked Salisbury Police car.
According to officers at the scene, a Dodge Caliber hit the all-black cruiser as it traveled to Rowan Regional Medical Center for a call for assistance.
The wreck happened at the intersection of Statesville Boulevard and West Innes Street about 9 a.m.
Deputy Chief Steve Whitley said Lt. Lee Walker went through the intersection with his lights and sirens on.
Kenneth Jones said his wife and daughter were in the Dodge Caliber that hit the officer.
Angela Jones and Jones’ 19-year-old daughter, Angelathea Childs, were taken to Rowan Regional Medical Center.
“My family’s hurt. This is unbelievable,” Kenneth Jones said.
Kenneth Jones was visibly upset at the scene as he looked at the two cars, often yelling in frustration.
At one point, an officer asked Kenneth Jones to back away from the scene because of his demeanor.
Kenneth Jones said his wife told him she didn’t see or hear Walker’s vehicle.
“My wife didn’t have any music blasting. It’s 8:30 in the morning. She’s taking my daughter to work,” he said.
Highway Patrol Trooper Deal said the woman’s light was green at the intersection.
But witnesses told Deal that Walker proceeded cautiously through the intersection where the wreck occurred.
“He had his lights and sirens on,” Deal said. “He was proceeding through the intersection with caution like the law requires him to do and she lawfully had the green light.”
The trooper said Walker was traveling north on Statesville Boulevard as he came to the intersection.
Witnesses told Deal that Walker came to “an almost complete stop” before he was hit by Jones who was traveling in the far right lane heading toward Catawba College.
Deal said the Highway Patrol is continuing to investigate the incident.
No charges have been filed, but Deal said he expects to meet with the Rowan County District Attorney’s Office soon to discuss the wreck.
Deputy Chief Whitley said it’s routine for the department to ask the Highway Patrol to investigate incidents involving Salisbury Police cars and civilian vehicles.
Whitley said Walker appeared to have minor injuries.
Jones said the investigation should include the visibility of lights on unmarked cars.
“She didn’t see any lights or hear any sirens,” he said. “Where are the lights on this thing?”