MOLINE ACRES, Mo. – The Moline Acres police officer who was struck and injured by another patrol car, driven by a Bellefontaine Neighbors police officer, has been identified as Sgt. Herschel Turner.
Turner had been with the Moline Acres Police Department since 2015, but had been serving as an officer for 22 years.
“His unfortunate death occurred while serving our community. He was an outstanding asset to the city of Moline Acres and the community,” Moline Acres Police Chief Col. Gregory Moore said. “He was the perfect-attendance-type officer, he loved his job, he did it well.”
According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the crash happened around 12:30 a.m. Saturday on Chambers Road near Lance Avenue.
Chief Moore said this happened on the border of the Moline Acres and Bellefontaine Neighbors patrol areas, where both departments often assist with mutual aid.
Chief Moore said Sgt. Turner stopped to help a Bellefontaine officer on a traffic stop. The details of the traffic stop are unclear.
As Sgt. Turner helped the Bellefontaine officer with that traffic stop, a suspect driving a stolen vehicle was leading a different Bellefontaine police officer on a chase.
The suspect in the stolen vehicle was driving westbound on Chambers Road and arrived at the traffic stop where Sgt. Turner was, crashing into a Moline Acres Police Department patrol car.
When the Bellefontaine police officer, who was chasing the suspect, came over the hill on Chambers Road, he tried to avoid the crash scene where the suspect had just hit a Moline Acres patrol car. The officer swerved the avoid the crash and hit Turner on the sidewalk, head-on.
Turner suffered two broken legs and facial fractures and was taken to the hospital where he later died.
Chief Moore said the two incidents, the traffic stop that Sgt. Turner was assisting with, and the police chase involving a stolen vehicle, were not related.
Chief Moore is urging others to follow police orders. He said this could have been avoided if the suspect driving a stolen vehicle would have stopped and pulled over in the first place.
Turner is survived by his wife and three daughters.
BackStoppers released a statement Saturday night, which said the organization was preparing to meet with Turner’s wife to find out how they can support the family financially in the upcoming future.
Chief Moore is asking the community to keep Sgt. Turner’s family and the Moline Acres Police Department in prayer. The department is providing counselors starting Monday. Chief Moore said he has been in contact with the Bellefontaine department, which is also very shaken up about this incident.