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    Cops Identify DUI Drivers In Crash That Injured VSP Trooper On I-495

    By Cecilia Levine,

    30 days ago

    Virginia State Police have identified the two DUI drivers involved in a crash on I-495 that hospitalized a trooper.

    The trooper was dispatched to a sedan in a northbound lane around 3 a.m. to help a sedan that had stopped near Exit 52 in Fairfax County, a spokesperson for the VSP said.

    The sedan's driver, Erica D. Bernard, 43, of Albright, WV, was still in the vehicle and was refusing to cooperate with the trooper to exit the vehicle or move the vehicle to a safer location on the shoulder, police said.

    While the trooper was working to engage the individual, a Jeep Cherokee driven by Joanna F. Hatch, 35, of Arlington, struck a tractor-trailer that had stopped due to the travel lane being closed by the sedan, the VSP said.

    The impact of that crash caused the Jeep to spin around and strike the trooper's patrol car, which then struck the sedan, which then struck the trooper, as the trooper was standing next to the driver's side of the sedan.

    The trooper sustained minor injuries and was taken to Fairfax INOVA Hospital for evaluation. His patrol car was positioned behind the sedan with its emergency lights activated.

    Bernard, who was still seated inside the vehicle at the time it was struck, was also treated for minor injuries sustained in the crash.

    Bernard has been charged with Driving under the Influence of Drugs, Obstruction, Possession of a Schedule I or II Substance, Refusal of a Blood/Breath Test, and Improperly Stopping a Vehicle on a Highway. Hatch was charged with DUI.

    Both Bernard and Hatch were transported to Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.

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