Car strikes RI trooper’s vehicle; Driver charged

Tim Garcia | WPRI 12

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Getting through Providence proved a bit harder for drivers Thursday afternoon following a crash involving a Rhode Island State trooper.

Capt. John Allen told Eyewitness News the trooper was on a construction detail on I-95 North near Branch Avenue around 1:30 p.m. when another vehicle struck the patrol car.

According to Rhode Island State Police Lt. Derek Borek, Sean D. Byrnes, 27, of Somerset has been charged with driving under the influence of liquor and/or drugs; reckless driving; and possession of heroin.

Borek said Byrnes was driving under the influence when he crashed his black Ford Fusion into the trooper’s vehicle, two construction vehicles, and a pickup truck. In total, five vehicles were damaged.

State contractors were doing guardrail repair on the interstate just south of the Branch Avenue Exit when the crash happened, Borek said.

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The trooper was not hurt. However, Borek said Byrnes and a person in one of the other vehicles were transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The crash backed up traffic while police investigated.

Allen said charges may be filed against the driver.

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