A Kentucky motorist has been charged with murder following the tragic death of a local detective and mother.
Detective Deidre Mengedoht, 32, was sitting in her police car on Interstate 64 on Christmas Eve after pulling over a pickup truck on the right-hand lane, said Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad during a press conference.
Mengedoht’s emergency lights were reportedly engaged during the stop, but a fellow driver who was allegedly impaired slammed into her cruiser from the back, Conrad explained. The crash pushed her vechicle into the pickup truck, and Mengedoht's cruiser burst into flames.
“The damage to her vehicle was catastrophic, and Detective Mengedoht was killed in the collision,” Conrad said, adding that none of the four people in the truck that was pulled over suffered any serious injuries.
Conrad said that Roger D. Burdette was arrested on charges of murder and operating a vehicle under the influence.
The Courier-Journal, a Louisville-based newspaper, obtained an arrest citation for the incident, which claimed that Burdette admitted he was under the influence of a slew of prescription drugs and “made no attempt to avoid collision" with Mengedoht’s cruiser.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer offered his condolences on Twitter.
"When Deidre joined LMPD, she committed herself to service on behalf of our city, and her death is a painful reminder of the sacrifices that our public safety professionals make every day,” he tweeted.
Conrad added that Mengedeoht was a seven-year veteran of the department, and had a young son.
“I can’t imagine what her family is going through today,” he said.
Burdette pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of murder and driving under the influence, according to The Courier-Journal.
[Photo Credit: Louusville Metro Police Department]
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