- Associated Press - Thursday, June 29, 2017

FARMER CITY, Ill. (AP) - An Illinois State Police trooper has died following a crash involving a tractor-trailer this week along Interstate 74, authorities said.

Ryan Albin was injured in the Wednesday afternoon crash near Farmer City in central Illinois. He died hours after being airlifted to a nearby hospital, according to a statement from Illinois State Police. Albin’s canine partner was injured in the accident.

Police said the driver of the truck and a passenger declined medical treatment.

A preliminary investigation indicated the crash occurred as both vehicles were in slow traffic near a construction zone, the agency said. The investigation is ongoing.

Albin’s canine partner, Biko, was in the backseat of his police vehicle, police said. The dog was taken to a veterinarian’s office with minor injuries.

Albin joined the state police in 2006. He was assigned to District 6 in Pontiac as a canine officer.

“Our hearts are heavy with grief,” Illinois State Police Director Leo Schmitz said. “I extend my deepest sympathy to Trooper Albin’s family, friends, and co-workers. I pray that those who cared for and loved him find the strength they need during this most difficult time.

“No further words can express the pain and loss we are all feeling.”

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