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Seal Beach officer injured during traffic stop when his patrol vehicle is struck by a suspected DUI driver

A Seal Beach police officer was hospitalized Saturday after a suspected drunken driver slammed into the officer’s patrol vehicle during a traffic stop, authorities said.

The officer had pulled over another vehicle in the area of Pacific Coast Highway and Mariner Drive about 3:15 p.m., said the Seal Beach Police Department in a news release. Sometime during the traffic stop while the officer was standing next to his parked vehicle, a Ford F-150 pickup truck rear-ended the officer’s patrol car, knocking him to the ground.

A volunteer with the police department had been driving by and witnessed the crash. The volunteer ran over to aid the officer and alerted authorities, police said.

Paramedics transported the officer to a local hospital with moderate injuries, police said.

Soon after the crash, the driver of the F-150 lost control of the truck and hit a wall, police said. The driver attempted to run away, but was taken into custody by Huntington Beach police. The driver was not injured in the crash.

Authorities later identified the driver of the F-150 as Kenneth Jacob Lopez, 30, of Huntington Beach, who was arrested on suspicion of felony hit-and-run and felony driving under the influence.

Source: Orange County Register

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