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Middletown Police Officer Directing Traffic Hit By Car, Suffers Hand Injury

An 80-year old man was charged with assault with a motor vehicle. Ptl. Thomas Hughes is being treated at Riverview Hospital for a hand injury.

A Middletown police officer who was directing traffic suffered a hand injury when he was hit by a car, police said.

Middletown Ptl. Thomas Hughes was directing traffic at the intersection of Highway 35 and Pine Street around 11:08 a.m. when he was struck by a vehicle driven by Roland Eckstein, 80, from Pelican Road in Middletown.

The officer was assigned to the intersection when multiple lights on the highway lost power.

Police say that Eckstein attempted to pass vehicles on the shoulder of the road when he struck the officer who was standing in the intersection. Eckstein then left the scene but was located in Red Bank by the Red Bank Police Department. He was charged with assault with a motor vehicle.

Officer Hughes was transported to Riverview Hospital where he received treatment for a hand injury. The accident is being investigated by Sergeant Douglas Wiatrak of the Traffic and Safety Bureau.

Matt Relyea July 08, 2014 at 10:40 AM
Headline should read, 'Police officer injured for not paying attention, blames innocent man'
Matt Relyea July 08, 2014 at 01:02 PM
No, just saying because I've seen lots of officers 'directing traffic' that don't direct all of the traffic, lose focus, look at smartphones, Etc. the man hit a hand, it's not like he ran someone over. He probably had no idea he hit anything at all. The man may have been trying to make a turn and the officer may not have been paying attention to his surroundings, because if he was, he would not have gotten his hand hit by a car. There is not enough information in the article to say either way... Police officers are not gods, they are just as fallible as the rest of us!
Mac July 13, 2014 at 09:23 AM
How does one driving on the shoulder of the road hit someone in an intersection?
Matt Relyea July 13, 2014 at 06:14 PM
Good question, Mac. My thought is that the cop wasn't paying attention, felt stupid, and had to take it out on someone to make sure he got covered under workmans comp.

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