Troopers investigate fatal crash involving officer

UPDATED Dec. 4 at 4:41 p.m.

According to Delaware State Police Public Information Officer Master Corporal Jeffrey R. Hale, the 47-year-old operator of the 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe that was involved in the fatal motor vehicle crash on SR 12 just east of Felton on Saturday, Dec. 3 has been identified as Carl J. Klotz.

This crash remains under investigation by the Delaware State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit.


HARRINGTON – A Harrington police officer was involved in a fatal motor vehicle crash involving a pedestrian that occurred early this morning east of Felton, according to Police Chief Norman Barlow.

The initial investigation has determined that the crash occurred at approximately 1:41 a.m. this morning, Saturday, Dec. 3 as 32-year-old Christopher Thompson of Coatesville, PA was operating a 2006 Dodge 3500 pick-up truck. The truck was pulling a 30-foot enclosed box trailer along eastbound SR 12 (Midstate Road) east of Chimney Hill Road in Felton.

Due to a mechanical problem with the trailer, Mr. Thompson had pulled onto the right-hand shoulder of the roadway; however, a portion of the trailer remained in the eastbound lane of travel. He then placed a floor jack under the driver’s side of the enclosed box trailer’s tires.

As he was standing in the eastbound lane of the roadway, he was struck by the right front bumper of a fully marked 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe, which was being operated by an off-duty 47-year-old male police officer from the Harrington Police Department.

Thompson was thrown onto the hood and windshield of the Tahoe before landing in the eastbound lane of travel where he came to rest.

Mr. Thompson, who was dressed in all dark clothing at the time of the crash, was pronounced dead at the scene. Neither alcohol nor drugs use on the part of Thompson appear to be a factor in this crash.

According to Delaware State Police Public Information Office Master Cpl. Jeffrey Hale, the male operator of the Tahoe, who was properly restrained at the time of the crash, was not injured. Alcohol and drug use on the part of the operator is not being considered as a factor in the crash, nor is excessive speed. The name of the Harrington Police officer is currently being withheld but will be released at a later date.

Midstate Road was closed for approximately five hours as the crash was investigated and cleared.

The Harrington police officer, who was properly restrained at the time of the crash, was not injured. A female passenger, who was seated in the rear passenger seat of the Dodge, was not injured in the crash.

“The city of Harrington family extends their deepest condolences to all involved in this tragic accident,” Chief Barlow stated in a press release. Inquiries of the Harrington Police Department can be made by calling 302-398-4493.

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