UPDATE: State police car spins, crashes after being rammed by driver on I-5

UPDATE 11:57 a.m.

An Oregon State Police Lieutenant suffered minor injuries after a driver rammed their car on Interstate 5 in Salem Friday morning, causing it to spin and crash into a barrier, the agency announced in a news release. 

Cpt. Kyle Kennedy, state police spokesman, said the lieutenant tried to stop the driver for “traffic violations” when the driver rammed the patrol car from behind and fled north on the freeway just before 8:45 a.m. Friday.

“The initial stop will be part of the investigation,” Kennedy said in an email.

Police stopped and arrested the driver farther in the Salem area, according to the news release.

The police statement said no additional information would be released.

The collision shut down I-5 traffic for about two and a half hours before the freeway was reopened.

UPDATE 11:17 a.m. – All northbound lanes on Interstate 5 in Salem have reopened. “Expect delays as backed-up traffic catches up, and please watch out for emergency responders,” the state Department of Transportation announced in a statement.

Original story below:

Police say a driver rammed a state trooper’s patrol car on Interstate 5 in Salem and fled before being arrested Friday morning.

“The trooper is okay,” according to Cpt. Kyle Kennedy, Oregon State Police spokesman. “We are working to gather more details as to why this happened.”

The far left northbound lane on the freeway was closed due to “police activity” at milepost 256, southwest of Badger Corner, according to a statement from the state Department of Transportation. Traffic is being diverted off the freeway at the Market Street exit, the agency said.

Drivers were asked to use alternative routes, delay their trip or expect long delays.

Police stopped and arrested the driver farther north on I-5.

“This is the very preliminary version of this incident,” Kennedy said in an email.

Contact reporter Ardeshir Tabrizian: [email protected] or 503-929-3053.

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Ardeshir Tabrizian has covered criminal justice and housing for Salem Reporter since September 2021. As an Oregon native, his award-winning watchdog journalism has traversed the state. He has done reporting for The Oregonian, Eugene Weekly and Malheur Enterprise.