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Several Chicago Police Officers Involved In Crashes This Year; At Least Two Were Fatal

(CBS) -- On- and off-duty Chicago police officers have been involved in several crashes so far this year, including two over the weekend--one that killed a woman in a restaurant.

In one week in late May, there were five crashes, including one that killed an 84-year-old woman. A CPD transport van blew a red light at Laramie and Division, crashing into an unmarked police SUV and several other vehicles, killing Verona Gunn.

This past weekend, an off-duty police officer lost control of his car, slamming into a restaurant and killing a woman sitting inside. Police said the 24-year-old officer's blood alcohol level was .083, just over the legal limit, when he crashed into Tony's Philly Steak, at the corner of 87th and Wood around 2:45 a.m. Sunday.  Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said that hat officer will be charged with DUI.

Also this past weekend, two Chicago police officers were involved in a crash Saturday in the East Humboldt Park neighborhood.

The officers, ages 24 and 25, were responding to a shooting incident near the intersection of Chicago and Harding around 12:30 p.m. when a truck hit them at the intersection of California and Chicago avenues.

According to police, both officers and the 22-year-old driver of the truck were transported to Stroger Hospital for non-life threatening injuries to the face and head.

In a third accident this past weekend, a police SUV collided with another SUV at Harlem and Higgins around 3 a.m. The female officer, 39, was transported to the hospital in good condition. The other driver refused treatment.

On March 3, an off-duty Chicago police officer was critically injured in a crash on the Eisenhower Expressway.

Illinois State Police said the officer was heading east on Interstate 290 near Kedzie shortly before midnight, when something caused him to drive up an embankment on the right shoulder, then swerve across four lanes of traffic and into a concrete barrier wall on the left shoulder.

The officer was taken to Stroger Hospital in critical condition.

In one of the other late May accidents. a Chicago police car crashed while chasing possible murder suspects.

It started around 7:15 p.m. at 80th and Emerald on May 22, the scene of a deadly shooting, but it ended when officers crashed at 119th and Western.

Another vehicle struck the driver's side of the marked squad car in an intersection, according to police.

The suspects got away, traveling south on Western Avenue.

On May 29, slick roads due to weather may have been a factor in a late-night crash that left a police car damaged and sent two officers to the hospital on the city's Northwest Side.

Two Chicago police officers in an SUV were driving north on Cumberland when another vehicle crossed into the southbound lanes of traffic.

The officers dodged the oncoming vehicle by driving onto the shoulder of the road but struck a light pole before the SUV came to a stop.

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