Chief Identifies Gulfport Officer Involved In Three-Car Collision - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Chief Identifies Gulfport Officer Involved In Three-Car Collision

GULFPORT (WLOX) -- Smashed windows, crushed steel, and warped wheels. The Gulfport Police car looked like a mangled mess, after it crashed into another vehicle on Highway 49 around 10:33 PM Thursday.

Officer Bryan Watson suffered minor injuries.

"Fortunately, when you look at his vehicle, it's amazing he wasn't more injured than what he was," said Leonard Papania.

Papania is the Commander of Operations for the Gulfport Police Department. He says the wreck happened when the officer was responding to a call to back-up another officer.

When WLOX-News asked Papania: "So he did not have blue lights on?" he responded "That's correct."

Papania says officer Watson's cruiser hit the front passenger side of a Lincoln Town Car, injuring the woman driving.

"We know the primary issue here is the officer entered the intersection on a red light, failing to yield the right of way," said Papania." And the secondary concern is what was the speed he was traveling at when it occurred?"

After the initial crash at the intersection, the police cruiser spun around, hit a telephone pole, and ended up in the parking lot of the Sonic Drive In. Police say the cruiser hit a brand new Mazda that was parked there. The driver was not hurt.

"In a police vehicle, if you're going through an intersection, when there's traffic present, and you're going to bypass whatever lighting there is on it, you have to have your blue lights on," Papania said. "You still have to exercise due regard, because even though your blue lights are on, a driver may not see it, may not hear it. So it's our responsibility to ensure that we proceed cautiously."

Gulfport Police are conducting two investigations: One to determine what happened and who's at fault, and the other to find out if Officer Watson violated any department policies.

Officer Watson is a patrol officer, he has been on the Gulfport Police force for almost two years, and he remains on duty.

By: Trang Pham-Bui

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Peralta strikes out nine in debut, Shuckers fall 7-3 in extras

    Peralta strikes out nine in debut, Shuckers fall 7-3 in extras

    Sunday, June 25 2017 11:35 PM EDT2017-06-26 03:35:20 GMT
    Freddy Peralta prepares to pitch for the Biloxi Shuckers at MGM ParkFreddy Peralta prepares to pitch for the Biloxi Shuckers at MGM Park

    The Biloxi Shuckers had late-inning opportunities but fell 7-3 to the Mississippi Braves in 10 innings on Sunday night. The Shuckers loss sets up a rubber game in the series finale on Monday night. Freddy Peralta started for the Shuckers in his Double-A debut, and showed why he earned a promotion from Carolina out of the All-Star break.

    More >>

    The Biloxi Shuckers had late-inning opportunities but fell 7-3 to the Mississippi Braves in 10 innings on Sunday night. The Shuckers loss sets up a rubber game in the series finale on Monday night. Freddy Peralta started for the Shuckers in his Double-A debut, and showed why he earned a promotion from Carolina out of the All-Star break.

    More >>
  • TNT recovery ranch opens doors to new facility

    TNT recovery ranch opens doors to new facility

    Sunday, June 25 2017 10:52 PM EDT2017-06-26 02:52:10 GMT

    Bible verses and words of affirmation line the walls of the brand new TNT Recovery Ranch dormitory. 

    More >>

    Bible verses and words of affirmation line the walls of the brand new TNT Recovery Ranch dormitory.

    More >>
  • Vibrio patient thanks Hancock Medical staff for saving his life

    Vibrio patient thanks Hancock Medical staff for saving his life

    Sunday, June 25 2017 10:35 PM EDT2017-06-26 02:35:33 GMT

    Dick Empson is standing tall again - all 6 feet, four inches of him. And he’s back to thank Hancock Medical Center staff that got him back on two legs. “I told them that I was not coming back by to visit until I could walk in,” he said. He and his family have been vacationing in Pass Christian for 25 years. Last year, was one that won’t soon be forgotten. That's when he contracted vibrio. He lost his leg and nearly lost his life.

    More >>

    Dick Empson is standing tall again - all 6 feet, four inches of him. And he’s back to thank Hancock Medical Center staff that got him back on two legs. “I told them that I was not coming back by to visit until I could walk in,” he said. He and his family have been vacationing in Pass Christian for 25 years. Last year, was one that won’t soon be forgotten. That's when he contracted vibrio. He lost his leg and nearly lost his life.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly