NORTH CANTON, OH (WOIO) - A North Canton Police officer on patrol was struck by an intoxicated driver in a stolen sports utility vehicle (SUV) early Saturday morning.
The incident happened on Market Avenue North around 2:30 a.m.
Police tell 19 Action News the driver of the SUV, Kevin Kreiter, 59, of Florida was driving towards the cop cruiser without his lights on when he struck the cruiser on the passenger side. The officer swerved to avoid the accident but it was too late.
The cruiser was suffered minor damage, the officer was unharmed.
Kreiter fled the scene, his SUV was later found stopped at the intersection of Kent Avenue and Smith Kramer Street by Lake Township Police.
Officers approached the SUV, the driver was not inside. Kreiter was spotted wandering the intersection highly intoxicated. Upon further investigation, officials discovered Kreiter had just been in a accident prior to the police cruiser collision and that the SUV was in fact stolen.
Kreiter was charged with Grand Theft of a Motor Vehicle, O.V.I., Reckless Operation, and Fleeing the Scene of an Accident. He was booked into the Stark County Jail. Additional charges are expected as the various law enforcement agencies continue to investigate the series of events.
Officers from the Lake Township Police Department and Deputies from the Stark County Sheriff's Office assisted North Canton Police. Troopers from the Ohio State Patrol handled the crash investigation and arrested the driver.