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Officer Hurt in Early Morning Crash

by ARLnow.com July 20, 2011 at 8:42 am 5,350 77 Comments

An Arlington police officer suffered serious injuries after a crash in Ballston early this morning.

Around 2:15 a.m. the officer was “responding to a call for a disturbance at a bar” at Ballston Common Mall when his cruiser collided with another car at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Glebe Road.

The officer is reported to be in serious condition while the driver’s injuries are said to be non-life threatening.

The intersection was closed for part of the morning, but has since reopened. WJLA.com has more.

Update at 1:40 p.m. — Police have released a statement about the incident. We’re told that the officer was responding to a call at Bailey’s Pub & Grill in Ballston. He’s expected to make a full, long-term recovery.

The Arlington County Police Department is investigating a serious accident that occurred this morning in the intersection of North Glebe Road and Washington Boulevard. An Arlington County police cruiser collided with another car in the intersection and the officer was transported to a nearby hospital with serious injuries.

At approximately 2:16 a.m. on Wednesday, July 20, 2011, police were dispatched to a large group of disorderly subjects at the Ballston Mall. Directly after, an accident involving a police officer was reported to the communications center. Medic units transported a police officer to a local hospital with serious injuries. The officer, age 40, has been with the Arlington County Police Department for almost five years. The driver of the other vehicle, a 21 year old woman, sustained minor injuries but was also transported to the hospital.

Traffic was shut down in the immediate area for a significant time period while officers collected evidence at the scene. Preliminary investigation reveals that the police officer was traveling southbound on North Glebe Road, proceeding straight through the intersection. The investigation is still ongoing and more information will be released when available.

Anyone who has additional information about this accident is asked contact Detective P. Mulvaney at (703) 228-4239. Witnesses can also call the Arlington Police Tip-Line at (703) 228-4242.

  • There are no bars at Ballston Mall

  • Mkt Common

    Union Jack’s is.

    • No it’s not.

      • Anonymouse

        Uh… yea it is…. your wrong.

        There are 3 bars connected to Ballston mall. Union Jacks, Rock Bottom Brewery, and Baily’s.

        You can get to ALL 3.. through the inside of Ballston Mall.

        • Uh, you’re wrong.

          There are no bars in Virginia.

          • Anonymouse

            No.. your wrong.

            There are no “Stand-Alone” bars in VA, but there are bars. In other words, the establishment must serve food and that food must contribute a certain percentage of sales in order for a license to be given. But that doesnt mean the place has to be called a restaurant. A bar is a bar, and one can go into any of the 3 i mentioned, sit at “a bar”, and order drinks without ever having to touch food.

          • Nice backpedal there. If an establishment serves food, by definition they are a restaurant. And yes they are called restaurant by the tax authority.

          • CW

            Maybe we can agree to call them “pubs” or “taverns” which imply the presence of food but the dominant element being alcohol?

            I agree – I’m hesitant to consider them bars because they serve food. I agree that there are no bars in Virginia.

          • You want pubs or taverns? Move!

          • CW

            Restaurants it is…

          • ArlForester

            Nitpicking FTW!

          • Rebecca

            saying “your wrong” is very wrong. Or at least incorrect.

          • JamesE

            your wrong its over their

  • I got that PMA

    You got that right TGEoA.

  • Hmmm

    There are actually multiple bar at Ballston mall… Including that craphole Baileys

  • KalashniKEV

    From the pic of the damage, he must have been haulin’ ass.

    *SQUELCH* We’ve got a popped collar at Union Jack’s who refuses to pay for his apple-tini because he watched the bartender and it was made wrong, over

    10-4, I’M ON IT!!! *REVVVVVVV*

  • BallsinBallston

    Drove past the wreckage this morning. The image you have is the better looking side. The whole driver’s was completely destroyed. The subcompact it collided with was also destroyed, but the officer’s car took the brunt. Hope the officer is okay.

    • CW

      Hope the officer is ok? What about the poor innocent sap that never got a chance to know what hit him? I hate to make assumpetions, but based on a couple years worth of firsthand empirical data, my experience is that, late at night, the cops don’t often bother to use their lights or their sirens.

      • Tabby

        “while the driver’s injuries are said to be non-life threatening.”

        RIF

        • CW

          Umm, why don’t you “UYB” (use your brain)? First of all, it should be “non life-threatening”, because “non-life threatening” means it’s threatening his non-life, whatever that means. But anyhow, let’s list some injuries that are non life-threatening: broken bones, paralysis, facial disfigurement. There is not sufficient evidence to deem him “ok”. So before you go snarking and being an internet smarty pants, why don’t you think about it first? At the very least, he’s got a badly damaged car and he’s in the hospital. All because, very likely, the cop wasn’t using his lights and/or sirens. If the cop was using both, I just can’t really believe that any human being would be dumb enough to pull right into his way, which leads me to believe he wasn’t.

          • SomeGuy

            Let’s hope they’re both okay.

            “If the cop was using both, I just can’t really believe that any human being would be dumb enough to pull right into his way, which leads me to believe he wasn’t.”

            But CW, you really don’t have any factual basis for suggesting the cop didn’t have his lights/siren on. Furthermore, please don’t underestimate the stupidity of drivers, whether they’re law enforcement or not. People manage to defy Darwin and laws of physics all the time, including the driver in a recent ArlNow post who flipped a car… somehow.

            As stated, let’s just hope everyone’s okay.

          • CW

            I don’t have any factual basis for saying that THIS cop was doing so, but I have seen with my own eyes dozens of occasions where cops are going legitimately 60+ mph on the major thoroughfares at early-morning hours without lights or sirens (and, I am not kidding, sometimes without even headlights).

            It goes without saying that I hope everyone recovers, but it also goes without saying that someone was negligent. I witness the stupidity of civilian drivers on a daily basis, but the fact that I’d consistently seen such behavior as the aforementioned out of ACPD led me to latch onto the idea.

          • Yes, I have even witnessed an ACPD officer run a redlight and cause an accident which they missed being hit, however instead of staying on scene to check on injuries and to call it in, the ACPD cruiser just sped off into the night. ACPD does what they want. They pull people over for what they want, they pull folks off the street at random. ACPD parks wherever they want, they constanly park in NO PARKING zones outside of calls, we would be ticketed if we did so. Vehicle 836 again last night, while working out at the gym there was unlawfully parked on the back alley at Adams and Wilson. I have seen ACPD officers park illegally and block traffic flow inrfont of Whitlows, a 7-11, Corner Bakery and other places, all of which were outside of calls and were done for personal reasons. We would be ticketed for such non violent crimes, hell I’d probably be rotting in jail if i ever did so given the record of ACPD. Most of these bar calls in Arlington are absolutely fraudulant for ACPD to handle in the first place. So many general calls are too, thats to say so many ACPD calls are really civil matters which police are not supposed to handle anyways but the whole bar patrol plays into the notion of victimless crimes. NoVictim=NoCrime!! Ron Paul 2012!!!

          • SomeGuy

            I am most certainly not a police apologist. Just didn’t want to jump to any conclusions.

            And NovaPJ, I’ve only seen a minimal amount of your work so can’t comment on it directly, but I respect the spirit of your attempts to keep the authorities accountable.

            Glad you exercise your rights, which seems to be grounds for bogus felony charges in Maryland, as discussed here:
            http://www.aclu-md.org/aPress/Press2010/052810_Motorcyclist.html

          • Based on our ride-along with Virginia State Police several weeks ago, I can tell you that there are plenty of people who are very slow to get out of the way of a police car with full lights and sirens. And if that’s the case, it’s not that much of a logical leap to conclude that occasionally someone will fail to yield the right of way to an officer responding to a call.

          • CW

            Said ride-along occurred during HOV enforcement, if I recall correctly, and thus during a period of very high traffic. You’re probably referring to people parting the traffic to let a car through. This case, where there was a perpendicular collision of two vehicles, it’s not about yielding the right of way. Someone was negligent. I never explicitly said that the cop was negligent because the facts are not out yet. What I did say was that, based upon my body of firsthand evidence, in which I have seen many ACPD officers driving at this time of the night in a manner in which would constitute reckless driving for a civilian, I had my suspicions.

          • Even in open traffic you’d be surprised how many people ride the passing lane and only notice a lights-and-sirens cop car on their tail a few seconds after it had to brake to wait for them to get out of the way.

          • CW

            Oh no, now you’ve done it, making a “passing lane” reference, presumably referring to a road like 66 or 395! Now the fury of hell will be unleashed!

            That said, I’m even surprised myself how well car windows and modest radio volume can obscure the loudest of sirens until they’re within maybe 100 yards.

          • Arnow.com, snitch or not?

          • Tabby

            1. I didn’t write it, ArlNow.com did, so you are telling him to use his brain.
            2. You’re incorrect. Check the AP stylebook.
            3. Someone who spells assumptions “assumpetions” is in a glass house throwing stones.
            4. Interesting how you assume that the other driver is male.

          • CW

            Yes, it is a common fact on the internet that any post criticizing spelling or grammar must contain at least one of the aforementioned errors itself. For example, your failure to capitalize the “S” in “AP Stylebook”, if we really want to split hairs.

            Looks like we’re both wrong anyhow:
            http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/news/mcintyre/blog/2008/05/insert_hyphen_here.html

            The hyphenation part was an aside. The using one’s brain was directed towards you because, in your post, you made the ridiculous statement that sustaining “non-life threatening” injuries equated to someone being OK. As I pointed out, paralysis, broken bones, and permanent disfigurement do not threaten one’s life.

            And I am sorry that you take offense to the use of the generic “he” to refer to a human individual. I realize it is not 100% PC but I was being lazy.

          • Tabby

            “in your post, you made the ridiculous statement that sustaining “non-life threatening” injuries equated to someone being OK.”

            I did no such thing.

          • CW

            1. I mentioned that someone said they hoped the officer was OK.
            2. I asked, what about the other guy (or gal)? (Implying that someone should hope that he or she would be ok too).
            3. You responded with ” ‘while the driver’s injuries are said to be non-life threatening.’ RIF”, which in direct response to my asking about someone being “OK”, could only serve as a statement that said person was OK.

      • Jonji

        It was a drunk driver that turned in front of him, not a ‘poor sap’.

  • Anonymouse

    Rumor is… Police Car had lights going but no siren due to the early hour…. no word on who had the right away but judging by the damage to both vehicles… neither one yielded at all if either had a red light. Then again… a police car responding to a call doesnt have to yield, although they would be smart too with how folks drive around here.

    • Evil

      Actually, just because you’re in a cop car doesn’t give you the right to blatantly disregard traffic laws.
      Cops can bypass certain traffic laws IF they have their lights and sirens on – BUT they still must regard the safety of others in the process.

      Don’t know all the details in this case, so not placing blame. Just clearing up what “rights” cops have.

      • fo’ realz

        Cops don’t have rights….

    • Nooner

      Siren use in police response is tricky. Nothing says the cops are coming like 5 cars with sirens on coming down the street. On the flip side according to VA law in order for emergency vehicles to do things outside normal vehicle operation they must have on lights and siren. Also, no emergency vehicle can by policy or law blow through a red light. You must slow to a speed where you could stop and “show due regard”.

      • CW

        I doubt someone inside Baileys/RB/Union Jack’s was going to be led to think “the cops are coming” when a cruiser had its lights and sirens on at the intersection of Washington and Glebe, unless they have superpowers.

        • out of towner

          best comment in the thread! thanks for the laugh!

        • Nooner

          Should have been taken as a general comment on tactics I have seen in 10 plus years in emergency response and not specific to this incident. I appoligize for the confusion, yes obviously people miles away inside would not hear a siren.

          • CW

            Right, twas a joke on my behalf. But the greater point I was getting at was that, when there’s no chance of it scaring away a perp, cops should be going full lights and sirens at any time of the day or night.

          • Nooner

            For sure, especially at speed and at that intersection. I think the key that we always focused on in the fire service is that you never blow a red light you have to be able to stop (slow to a roll before entering) so if someone or something appears infront of you in the intersection you can stop. This is called due regard. I hope eveyone recovers from this.

    • Wrong!! Police are not exempt from traffic laws, if the officer was hurt because he wasnt follwing traffic flow and ignored another drivers right to the road (still while expediting) then he’s learning the hard way that police are not above the law. Clearing intersections are a big part of training for emergency vehicles. I hope that is taught at the NVCJA but maybe not considering what else isnt??!!

      • doodly

        Of course cops are exempt from traffic laws when responding in an emergency. They have to proceed safely though, for their own good and the public’s. Drivers must yield to them when the light/siren is on. Duh.

        This is not about traffic law, it’s about safe driving. A cop has the right-of-way with his light on, but that doesn’t mean he can assume all cars see or hear it and can yield in time, so careful driving on the part of the cop is still necessary.

        I don’t know who is at fault here though. I didn’t witness it.

      • fo’ realz

        How was jail?

      • JEFFREY KOSLOW

        I love and respect the Arlington County Police.

        • Tabby

          Some of them are hotties.

  • CW

    But the laptop is fine! Does ACPD use Toughbooks?

  • Aaron

    Chevy’s is also still there, right? They close too early and appeal to a less anti-social crowd than the other three, though, so I’m certain they can’t be to blame with this incident.

  • JamesE

    The incident was at Arby’s when they ran out of curly fries.

  • DudeGuy

    The car was coming down Glebe towards Ballston Mall, the cop was coming Falls Church down Washington Blvd. This was right outside my apartment. The driver was carted away on a stretcher and so was the cop. At one point I counted 9 cop cars, 3 firetrucks and 2 ambulances. Again, no idea if alcohol was involved but the cop was hit very hard.

    Video
    http://tinypic.com/r/2dhi5hu/7

    • CW

      Right…given the location of the incident the cop was responding to (ballston common), I figured that this was the only logical way it could have happened. Unfortunately for demonstration purposes, the google streetview images for this intersection were all shot from the wrong sides of the two roads as pertaining to this discussion, but I will say from personal experience that the gas station, sign, and trees on that corner requires one to look carefully down glebe at that intersection.

      • Tabby

        Definitely Qantas.

    • Anonymouse

      Thats not what the Police said to the news. They stated the cop was coming southbound on Glebe. And just going by the position of the cars im inclined to believe thats correct. To me… going by final resting place of the vehicles (i drove by this morning), it looked as if the cop was coming southbound on glebe road towards ballston, and the other vehicle was going westbound on washington blvd. Due to the Motel… that corner can be a blind spot for vehicles traveling fast.

      • FrenchyB

        Yep, that’s the only way it makes sense.

      • Webster

        I agree, except what I saw I would have guessed the civilian car was going east on Washington and collided with the police cruiser going south on Glebe.

      • DudeGuy

        The other car (not the cop car) was pointing towards Ballston in the median of Glebe… it ran over the sign in the median.

    • Webster

      What’s your source for that?

      • Jonji

        Denied.

    • RealityCheck

      is it possible to get this video now? Can’t locate it at Tinypic.

  • MoMoney

    Way too much speculation in this thread. A lot of clueless Arlingtonians in here. Wait for the facts to come out before you all start throwing stones at either side. Its a tragic and unfortunate event that no one here has enough information on to comment.

    • CW

      Guilty as charged. Any time there is a traffic-accident-related post we all become armchair accident scene investigators. I think it’s human nature to try to fill in the details when there’s not enough information.

      • Aaron

        It’s also because each of us realizes that everyone else is a terrible driver. We need to use opportunities like this one to remind as many people as possible to stop driving so badly.

    • doodly

      Hasty, uninformed speculation? On the Internet?

  • Pablo Escobar

    Who goes drinking at Baileys? PABLO ESCOBAR occasionally frequents this terrible bar.

  • Eyesofarl

    I find it hard to believe that somebody would cut off an officer with lights and sirens on? Really? Firetrucks are louder and people cut them off all the time. The bottom line is, it was an accident and if you have never been inside of an emergency vehicle, you know nothing. NOVAPJ, you know that alley you see them park illegally in? Let me know next time you see it and meet me there. Arlingtonians, anywhere else in this country, if you cried like this anywhere else in this nation, I am fairly certain most people would be disgusted by your arrogant incompetence.

  • ARL native

    Novapj has first hand knowledge of police procedures. Arrest procedures that is.

  • CarsSuck

    I had no idea Arlington had so many aspiring accident investigators! Either that, or people who have no lives and love to be heard. ACPD does a great job!

  • Rick

    Usually the cops are already AT baileys by 2. No one gets good tips on pint night the waitresses should be better about following procedure and not serving to people who appear intoxicated.

    • Tabby

      Big drinkers sit at the bar and are thus served by bartenders, not by servers (AKA waiters and waitresses).

      • CW

        If it’s 2 AM on a Wednesday and you’re at Bailey’s, I’m pretty sure you’re a “big drinker” regardless of where you’re sitting, standing, or laying.

  • ArlingtonNative

    Based upon DudeGuys video (nice work – BTW) all you need is a buddy willing to take one for the team and create an accident with an ACPD cruiser late-night, then while all PD and FD on duty are flooding to that scene, you have free reign across the remainder of the county.
    The Joker always had a good distraction in store for Batman & Robin!

  • KP Soda

    I sure hope the next time you guys need to call 911 because someone has raped your wife, or stabbed you – the responding officer hasn’t read the s— you talk. No WAIT – they would save your life anyway!

  • CW

    So do we have any updated information or just nascent poster “Jonji” making unsubstantiated statements?

  • FYI to anyone who is interested. The 21 year old driver of the civilian vehicle is a relative. She is in the hospital right now in cirtical condition.

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