Fatal Crashes Involving Amarillo Police Officers

A violent car crash involving an Amarillo police unit killed one man late Thursday night.

Newschannel 10's Marissa Bagg explains how often Amarillo police are involved in accidents. 
Tony Griego died at this intersection last night when he was was ejected from his pick-up after colliding with a patrol car. It marks only the second fatal crash involving an Amarillo police unit in 5 years. Police say Griego pulled out in front of a patrol unit while trying to make a turn when the crash happened. He died at the scene.

The last fatal accident involving a patrol car was in March of 2001 when a driver pulled out in front of an officer off Wolflin Avenue. Alcohol was a factor in the crash five years ago.
"Because the occupants weren't restrained one was ejected and killed, it's something we don't want to see, we don't want our guys or the public involved," says Corporal Jerry Neufeld with the Amarillo Police Department. 

From January to August of this year, police have been involved in 18 accidents with other cars.In those incidents only a few minor injuries were reported.  "We have anywhere from 15 to 40 patrol cars out at any time, plus unmarked cars, and we've only had 6 accidents where we struck another car and it was our fault, it's not that bad, we'd like it to be less," says Corporal Neufeld.

In both of the fatal crashes, Neufeld says the outcome could have been different if everyone was wearing a seatbelt.

Tonight, the investigation continues into the crash that killed Griego.