Metro-East News

One dead in crash discovered by detective on his way to officer-involved shooting

A car crashed into this light pole on a state weigh station Sunday morning, nearly cutting the car in half and killing a 45-year-old Mt. Vernon man. Police are investigating.
A car crashed into this light pole on a state weigh station Sunday morning, nearly cutting the car in half and killing a 45-year-old Mt. Vernon man. Police are investigating. gpawlaczyk@bnd.com

An Illinois State Police detective on the way to an officer-involved shooting was the first to spot a Ford Fusion on Interstate 64 that had crashed into a light pole on a state weigh station Sunday morning, nearly cutting the car in half and killing a 45-year-old Mt. Vernon man .

Authorities had not released the man’s name by about 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

State Police Spokesman Trooper Calvin Dye Jr. said the detective called the accident in at 6:34 a.m. from I-64, about a mile west of the Scott Air Force Base exit, as he was on his way to a shooting scene at the newly-opened Club Onyx in Centreville. Dye said a security guard at the club noticed someone in the parking lot waving a gun out of his car window around 4:30 a.m.

An officer pulled up to the club, at 247 South 88th St. in Centreville, and warned the driver to drop the gun. Dye said the man in the car took off and confirmed the officer fired his gun. The officer was not injured.

The detective was on his way to investigate that incident when he discovered the accident.

“He was driving by when he happened to look over and spotted the car. It was nearly torn in two and was wrapped around the light pole,” Dye said.

The weigh station is near Scott Air Force Base.

The driver of the 2015 car, a 25-year-old man from Woodlawn, is listed in serious condition at a hospital in St. Louis, according to Dye.

Police were investigating the accident.

The detective, who was not identified, stayed at the scene until backup officers arrived.

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