UPDATE: Charges filed and trooper is "extremely critical"


Police say a trooper was critically injured after he and another trooper tried to arrest a man on suspicion of DUI.

It happened at a nearly-completed traffic stop in Northampton County, about 20 miles south of Stroudsburg.

A police commanding officer from PSP Bethlehem came out from the St. Luke's University Hospital- Bethlehem and briefed reporters shortly before 4 p.m.

He says around 10:15 a.m., a trooper made a traffic stop for speeding, and gave the driver a ticket, telling him he was free to go and getting set to leave.

Then, the man got out and flagged him down to talk about how to go about paying his ticket, police Capt. Rich D'Ambrosio said.

The trooper realized the man's comments suggested he could be drunk or high, so he told him he was no longer free to go and called for back-up, D'Ambrosio said.

When a second trooper arrived, they both went to talk to him and gave him field-sobriety tests, and then went to place him under arrest, police said.

"The trooper goes to place the subject under arrest and at this point, he begins to violently resist arrest. The troopers were in a knock-down, drag-out fight along the side of the road with vehicles speeding by them," says D'Ambrosio.

D'Ambrosio says it was all caught on tape and he has seen video of the struggle on busy Highway 33 near 191, near the Plainfield Township-Stockertown line.

"At some point, the subject is able to free himself from the troopers while they are wrestling down on the ground. He goes back to his vehicle and retrieves a gun, take the weapon out and fires several shots at both of our troopers," says D'Ambrosio.

Police say the corporal was hit three times and was taken by helicopter to the hospital, where he underwent surgery and was out of surgery on Tuesday afternoon.

Police say the suspect was also hit by return fire from the troopers, but managed to get away and drive himself several miles away to Easton Hospital. He was transferred to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest near Allentown for surgery.

Meantime, the corporal was in extremely critical, but "stable" condition, D'Ambrosio said. They were hopeful based on his progress, and thanked the doctors here.

"Right now, our guy is up there fighting for his life. He's a warrior and he went through went through a heck of a fight out there along the side of the road, and he has the will to live, and God willing, he is going to pull through this," says D'Ambrosio.

"He stops by here every day for gas," says gas station employee Tom Timberman. "I was devastated when I heard he got shot. This is Stockertown. Man, stuff like that just doesn't happen around here."

At PSP Belfast, the flags were already at half-staff for the Texas church shooting. No one knew that on Election Day, troopers would be dealing with a shooting much closer to home, just two miles from their station.

Daniel Clary, 22, Effort, is facing several charges, listed as including homicide, attempted homicide, and disarming a law enforcement officer, in a complaint filed in court, records show.

Clary has no criminal history listed other than a summary charge of disorderly conduct/fighting three years ago in Easton, which he pleaded guilty to, according to online court records.

Police say they will hold another press conference at 10 a.m. on Wednesday.

UPDATE: 4:15 p.m.

During a news conference, Captain Richard D'Ambrosio says a corporal who was shot three times during a traffic stop has undergone surgery and is in "extremely critical" but stable condition.

He says the trooper stopped the driver for speeding and called for backup when he suspected the driver was intoxicated.

D'Ambrosio says the troopers were about to arrest the motorist when he began resisting.

That's when D'Ambrosio described the scene as a "knockdown, drag out fight" and it was "very, very violent."

The suspect was able to get to his car, and fired shots at the troopers. Troopers returned fire and hit the suspect multiple times.

The names of the trooper who was shot and the suspect were not released.

At 2:30 p.m. this afternoon, Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner Tyree C. Blocker announced that the wounded corporal is being treated in the intensive care unit (ICU) at St. Luke’s Hospital in Bethlehem.

“The thoughts of every Pennsylvania State Police employee are with our wounded member at this time,” said Commissioner Blocker. “We remain grateful to the multitude of first responders and medical professionals who have provided care, and to all Pennsylvanians for their continued support.”

Previously reported:
A Pennsylvania State Police corporal was shot and injured during a traffic stop on Route 33 in the area of Route 191 in Plainfield Twp., Northampton County just before 11:00 a.m. The corporal, whose name has not yet been released, was outside of his vehicle when the two exchanged gunfire.

The suspect fled the scene in a blue Pontiac sedan and drove himself to Easton Hospital, where he was taken into police custody. He is being treated for gunshot wounds. The corporal was flown from the scene via medical helicopter to St. Luke’s Hospital, where he is undergoing treatment for multiple gunshot wounds.

More information will be released as it becomes available.

Reports of a Pennsylvania State Trooper shot on Rt 191 near Route 33 in Plainfield Township. Troop M reports one trooper shot during traffic stop.

Nazereth School district issued a lockdown of schools which has since been lifted.

More details to come.

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