- The Washington Times - Friday, July 26, 2002

A Maryland state trooper who suffered a serious head gash after being rear-ended on Interstate 270 arrested the driver who caused the collision despite his injury, police said.

Trooper Brian Blocher, a one-year veteran, climbed over the console and radio equipment in the front of his patrol car before exiting through the passenger-side door and detaining the suspect, said Cpl. Rob Moroney, a Maryland State Police spokesman.

"He told [state police Superintendent David B.] Mitchell that he didn't want the suspect to try and drive away and create more havoc on the interstate," Cpl. Moroney said. "It took a lot of nerve for him to get out of his car and put that guy under arrest. It was very admirable of him."

Trooper Blocher, 26, was airlifted to University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, but his injuries are not considered life-threatening.

Kenneth Paul Kaminsky, 32, of Springfield was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics and reckless driving, Cpl. Moroney said. Additional charges are pending. The 2002 Mercury Cougar Mr. Kaminsky was driving was totaled.

Mr. Kaminsky refused medical treatment, but a third driver, Robert Andrew McArthur, 35, of Germantown, was transported by ambulance to Suburban Hospital in Bethesda after his 1998 Monte Carlo was struck by the Cougar.

Shortly after 7 p.m., the Rockville state police barracks received numerous complaints about an aggressive driver at the Inner Loop of the American Legion Bridge in Montgomery County, Cpl. Moroney said. The driver continued around the Capital Beltway and headed north on I-270.

The Rockville barracks assigned a trooper already on I-270 in Gaithersburg to look out for the Mercury Cougar, he said. While sitting in his patrol car on the left shoulder of I-270 North, Trooper Blocher saw the Cougar in his rear-view mirror as it approached.

"The driver apparently spotted the trooper and he made an abrupt lane change on 270 and rear-ended a Chevy Monte Carlo," Cpl. Moroney said. "He then glanced off the Monte Carlo and veered to the left, headed toward the trooper's car."

He said Trooper Blocher saw him coming and tried to accelerate to get out of his way, but the Mercury Cougar rear ended the patrol car.

"The trooper was bleeding profusely from [a] head injury and he exited passenger side because the driver's side door was damaged," Cpl. Moroney said. "He went back to the Cougar and placed the driver under arrest."

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