Driver charged with manslaughter after killing police officer in fatal crash.

8 month ago

The driver who hit and killed Salt River police officer was texting while driving

He was arrested and booked into jail for manslaughter, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and endangerment.

According to Arizona Department of Public Safety, the officer stopped a vehicle on the Loop 101 around 6 p.m. While outstanding with that vehicle, the officer was hit by a passing vehicle, which then hit the vehicle the officer had stopped.

The driver identified as 40-year-old Jerry Sanstead of Scottsdaleadmitted confessed to authorities that he was texting while driving.

the officer, identified as Clayton Townsend, was taken to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead shortly after 6:30 p.m.

The crash and subsequent investigation blocked several lanes of the loop 101 northbound near McKellips Road.

Townsend was survived by his wife and a 10-month-old child.