Jay man cited in crash involving police cruiser

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JAY — Police said Tuesday that a local man was charged over the weekend with driving without a license after he backed a vehicle into Hyde Road and into the path of a police cruiser responding to a fight.

Zachary Holtorf, 23, of Jay was cited on misdemeanor criminal charges of failure to yield to an emergency vehicle and driving without a license, Livermore Falls police Chief Ernest Steward Jr. said Tuesday. Holtorf was also issued a summons on a traffic violation of failure to yield on entering a public way, Steward said. Holtorf has an out-of-state license that is suspended, he said.

The owner of the car and the only passenger, Alisha Whitney, 20, of Jay, was injured in the crash and was treated and released from a Farmington hospital.

Livermore Falls police officer John Furr investigated the accident, which occurred at about 3:15 p.m. Saturday. It is the policy of most police departments to have another agency investigate an accident when a town vehicle is involved in a crash.

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Jay police Cpl. Jeffrey Fournier had his cruiser lights and siren on as he headed up Hyde Road to Franklin Road, also known as Route 133, when a car started backing out of a driveway and then hesitated, Steward said.

Fournier had crested a hill on the road near School Bus Drive and a Dodge Neon driven by Holtorf “backed vigorously” out of 73 Hyde Road and into the public way, and hesitated, Steward said.

Fournier attempted to go around the car but the car continued to back up across the road and was struck on the passenger side by the right front of the cruiser, Steward said.

The road surface had ice and frost on it and was still slippery from Friday’s storm, he said.

Whitney, owner of the 2001 Dodge, complained of back and neck pain and had minor cuts, he said. She was taken by NorthStar ambulance to Franklin Memorial Hospital where she was treated and released.

Fournier, 53, of Jay and Holtorf were not injured in the accident, Steward said.

The Jay Police Department’s 2011 Expedition sustained more than $6,000 damage, White said. The Dodge Neon was demolished, he said. Both were hauled away, he said.

Holtorf is scheduled to appear in Lewiston District Court on March 14.

It was the first accident Fournier, a police officer in the town for nearly 30 years, has been involved in with a police cruiser, White said.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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