Cop making a traffic stop on Christmas Eve dies after DUI driver slams into her police cruiser
The detective, identified as Deidre 'Dee Dee' Mengedoht, was conducting a traffic stop in the right-hand lane on Interstate 64 on Monday afternoon when the incident occurred
A 32-year-old Kentucky detective, who was also the mother of a young son, was reportedly killed on Christmas Eve on Monday, when her police cruiser was hit by a truck, according to reports. Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad, while addressing a press conference on Monday night, said that the truck driver has been charged with murder in the case.
The detective, identified as Deidre "Dee Dee" Mengedoht, was conducting a traffic stop in the right-hand lane on Interstate 64 on Monday afternoon when the incident occurred.
Mengedoht was reportedly inside her police cruiser at the time with her emergency lights on when the truck crashed into her from behind. Conrad said that after the impact, the detective's car caught fire and she died inside the vehicle.
The police chief added that the truck's driver, identified as 60-year-old Roger D. Burdette, was arrested by police officials on charges of murder and operating a vehicle under the influence. Reports state that the driver of the truck was allegedly impaired, according to PEOPLE.
My heart is breaking today as we mourn the tragic death of @LMPD Detective Deidre Mengedoht. When Deidre joined LMPD, she committed herself to service on behalf of our city, and her death is a painful reminder of the sacrifices that our public safety professionals make every day.— Mayor Greg Fischer (@louisvillemayor) December 25, 2018
An arrest citation was obtained by the Courier-Journal, which alleges that Burdette admitted to taking multiple prescription drugs before the incident occurred and that he "made no attempt to avoid collision with the police vehicle." The citation added that the truck driver was allegedly not able to maintain his balance during field sobriety tests.
The police chief said that Mengedoht had been on the force for more than seven years: "I can’t imagine what her family is going through, today of all days."
Conrad added that the late detective "gave her life serving the community" and added, "She would fight fiercely to seek justice for victims whose cases she was investigating."
According to jail records, Burdette was booked into Jefferson County Corrections and is set to appear in court on Wednesday, December 26, at 9 am. It was not clear whether the accused had an attorney or entered a plea.