A Cook County Sheriff’s Police Officer’s squad car was rear-ended Wednesday night while the officer was pulling over a driver who failed to slow down or change lanes for a stopped police car with its emergency lights flashing.
A Scott’s Law joint enforcement effort with the Illinois State Police, was taking place at Interstate Highway 57 and 147th Street in Markham at 10:49 p.m. Wednesday when the accident occurred.
Officer Joseph Maselko escaped injury. The driver of a 2012 Ford sedan that struck Maselko’s squad car sustained minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital. The Illinois State Police investigated the accident and cited the driver.
“It is disappointing that members of law enforcement have to fear for their lives when they respond to vehicle accidents and incidents on the roadways,” said Sheriff Dart. “These brave men and women are out there to serve and protect. Drivers need to be aware, slow down and move over when emergency vehicles are ahead.”
Scott’s Law was passed in 2002 in honor of Chicago Fire Department Lieutenant Scott Gillen who was struck and killed while assisting at an accident on the Dan Ryan expressway. The law is intended to protect all emergency personnel and anyone who pulls over to the side of the road in case of an emergency.
A first offense is punishable by a fine of $250. Second or repeat fines will be met with fines ranging from $750 to $10,000. Those who violate Scott’s Law and cause injury, or death will be charged with a class 4 felony.
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