CHP Officer Recovering After Crash By Possibly Fatigued Driver

The 22-year-old driver of car that struck the officer on Highway 101 at 8:30 a.m. Sunday told authorities she was at a casino all night.

California Highway Patrol officer who suffered two broken legs when his parked patrol car was struck by a vehicle on U.S. Highway 101 Sunday morning continues to recover at a hospital.

CHP Officer Jon Sloat said Officer Steven Rutledge was on his feet with the aid of crutches Tuesday, and the CHP is helping his family in the Los Angeles area move to the North Bay.

Rutledge has been living here with a CHP officer out of San Francisco since May 1. His family intended to join him in June, Sloat said.
[Previous: CHP Officer Suffers 2 Broken Legs After Car Slams Into His Patrol Unit on Hwy 101.]

Rachael Garris, 22, of Corning, was driving a Mitsubishi Montero at 55-65 mph north on Highway 101 around 8:30 a.m. Sunday when she allowed the car to turn right and run off the roadway, Sloat said.

The Mitsubishi struck the right rear of Rutledge's patrol car, and the impact caused Rutledge to be struck by his patrol car and thrown inside it, Sloat said.

Rutledge had previously pulled over a vehicle on the right shoulder south of Todd Road and he was looking into his patrol car at a computer screen when his car was struck by Garris' car, Sloat said.

Rutledge's patrol car then struck the car he had stopped, and its driver helped Rutledge out of the smashed patrol car and brought him to the right shoulder of the road, Sloat said.
[Previous: UPDATE: Lane Closure on Hwy 101 at Todd Due to Motorist Hitting CHP Officer.]

Garris suffered minor injuries, and alcohol and drugs, but not fatigue, were ruled out as factors in the collision, Sloat said.

Garris told the CHP she was at the  Graton Resort & Casino in Rohnert Park between midnight and 8 a.m. Sunday, and the CHP is reviewing video inside the casino, Sloat said.
--Bay City News
Goofpod May 29, 2014 at 10:44 AM
Three more victims of the unwanted casino. Far reaching effects. Ok, bring on the counter arguments in favor of organized gambling in our back yard. All objective virtues, I'm sure...
Sandy Murphey May 29, 2014 at 03:21 PM
These are victims of irresponsible people, not a casino. If we outlaw alcohol maybe there'd be less victims? Irresponsible people kill and maim every day, without ever setting foot in a casino. Organized drinking goes on in bars, right in our own neighborhoods. Are bars wanted or unwanted in our back yard? Drinking and gambling aren't crimes, but many crimes are associated with these activities. Unfortunately, we aren't able to dictate our beliefs or morals on other people, though we certainly do try.


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