New York State Police Major Robert Patnaude says troopers Brent Karow and Shane Swartz were investigating a single auto crash on Interstate 90 in North Greenbush at approximately 5:15 a.m. Sunday when a vehicle driven by Christopher Neumann struck their patrol auto.
The troopers, identified Sunday afternoon as Brent Karow and Shane Swartz, responded about 4 a.m.to a single-vehicle crash near Exit 8 on Interstate 90 eastbound.
Police said despite the troopers closing the left lane with flares, Neumann's 2010 Mercury sedan veered off the roadway and hit the back driver's side of the troopers' vehicle around 5:15 a.m. Sunday.
Karow was thrown about 70 feet into the median, troopers said, while Swartz was thrown and pinned under a tow truck that had responded to the single-car crash. Trooper Swartz was thrown and trapped underneath the tow truck. On Monday morning, New York State Police Troop G spokesman Mark Cepiel said both troopers were in serious but stable condition in the surgical ICU at Albany Medical Center. He was arrested for D.W.I., vehicular assault and a number of other violations.
Neuman plead not guilty in North Greenbush town court on Sunday night.
When state police dispatch was unable to contact Troopers Karow and Swartz, other officers were sent to the scene to check on them, state police said.
Shortly after 5:00 a.m., Rensselaer County 911 received multiple calls regarding a crash involving a police vehicle on Interstate 90 at the same location. Waite was also struck by the vehicle and suffered a laceration to his head, and the other tow truck operator was hit by flying debris.
Swartz, 34, also sustained fractures and internal injuries and was in surgery Sunday afternoon that was expected to take six to seven hours.
Neumann suffered a laceration on his face and other minor injuries and was treated and released. Swartz, also 34, is a four-year veteran of the state police who works out of Brunswick. He is now in NYS Police custody and will be arraigned later today.
State police thanked North Greenbush Police Department, Defreestville Fire Department, New York State Department of Transportation, Albany Medical Center and Albany Police Department for their help at a news conference after the crash.
Neumann was arraigned at the Town Court. He is being held at the Rensselaer County Jail without bail.