Crash kills North Carolina officer who just returned from maternity leave
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Police in North Carolina are mourning the loss of one of their own after she was killed while responding to a traffic accident Wednesday morning.
According to a news release from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, officers responded to a call in the southbound lanes of I-85 on the east side of the city after a tractor-trailer spilled a load of grain onto the highway.
Shortly after 3:30 a.m. local time, another tractor-trailer heading south collided with a truck cab, causing them to hit multiple CMPD cars, the news release said.
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The department said Officer Mia Goodwin, 33, was pronounced dead at the scene from injuries she received in the crash. Three other officers were taken to a Charlotte hospital where they were treated and released, CMPD said.
Chief Johnny Jennings said the crash is under investigation and it’s too early to tell if speed was a factor and whether criminal charges will be filed. Jennings said one of the truck drivers remain hospitalized.
"The profession hurts. The city hurts," Jennings said in a news conference.
"We are asking for your prayers not just for the Goodwin family but for all the CMPD family and for our great city," he continued.
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Jennings said Goodwin had been with the department since 2015. She leaves behind her husband, who’s a city firefighter and their three children, all under the age of three years old. She had just returned from maternity leave a few days prior to her death.
"She was an inspiring young woman who wanted to do more," Jennings added. "She loved the people around her."
A funeral and memorial service is currently being planned.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.