Motorist killed, officer injured after vehicle spins off I-64 into police cruiser

TOWN AND COUNTRY, MO (KPLR) - One person was killed and a Town & Country police officer hurt after a crash early Saturday morning.

It happened on Highway 40 west near 141 in Town and Country.

Investigators say just before 7am this morning, the driver of a Toyota Corolla was west on 40 when he lost control and slammed into the back of a stopped Town & Country police SUV with an officer inside of it.

That officer was investigating a separate minor crash and was pulled over onto the right shoulder of the highway when the wreck happened.

The Missouri Highway Patrol was called in to investigate.

Sergeant Al Nothum says the Corolla driver was going too fast for the winter weather conditions.

'This individual came up, lost control of his vehicle, began to spin as he lost of the control of the vehicle then struck the back of the police car,' said Nothum.

The Corolla driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Town and Country police officer was taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Town and Country Police say the area where this happened gets slick in bad weather because 40 is elevated over 141.

In fact, there were multiple minor wrecks in that immediate area when the larger crash happened.

'Right there at the elevated locations where the pavement is elevated we always get quick freeze and the officer that was struck today was investigating the third crash that had occurred in a very short span,' said Captain Bob Arthur from the Town and Country Police Department.

The two right lanes of 40 westbound in that area were shut down for some time while the highway patrol investigated the crash.

Town and Country Police have a message for drivers.

'We need the motoring public to slow down and drive carefully,' said Captain Arthur.

He added, 'The loss of any human life is extremely tragic and given the circumstances you know it could have been worse for the officer. We are saddened by any death and you know our thoughts and prayers go out to the family but it could have been worse.'

The name of the driver who was killed has not yet been released.

But the highway patrol tells us he was an adult male from the St. Louis area.

Town and Country police say the male officer was treated and released from a hospital this morning.

He is 54-years-old and has been on the Town and Country police force for 28 years.