Driver Who Struck Amish Buggies is a Corrections Officer

HOLLYWOOD, Md. (Nov. 13, 2008) — The driver of a minivan that collided with two bicyclists who in turn hit two Amish horse and buggy rigs last month in Leonardtown is a corrections officer with the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Timothy K. Cameron confirmed Tuesday.

The officer, Benjamin Allen, 19, is still employed with the agency, Cameron said, while the investigation into the crash is continuing.

“We’re handling it the way we would any investigation,” Cameron said. “He wasn’t driving an agency vehicle, he wasn’t even on the clock.”

The collision occurred Oct. 26 and according to police reports Allen collided with the bicyclists riding behind the two Amish horse and buggy rigs as they were stopped for the light at the intersection of Hollywood Road and Point Lookout Road.

Both buggies were trailing canoes at the time of the accident, police reports stated.

The two cyclists, who were 17-year-old juveniles, male and female, of Leonardtown and Mechanicsville, then struck one of the horse and buggy rigs, police reports stated.

Allen, along with the juvenile cyclists, were taken to St. Mary’s Hospital for treatment. Both he and the female were released but the male was taken to Washington Hospital Center for further care.

The drivers and passengers of the two buggies were unscathed, police said.

Cameron said that the correctional officer’s career could be affected if any charges are brought against him resulting from the investigation.

“We’ll treat this with emphasis and priority,” Cameron said.

The accident was the subject of questions from at least one Leonardtown town council member at the Nov. 10 meeting.

Mayor J. Harry Norris said that when the town deputy Steve Simonds was questioned about the accident, the deputy said he had few details on regarding it.

“It surprised me, too,” Norris said. “I would expect that a deputy assigned to the town would know about such a serious accident.

“He guaranteed me he’d look into it and get back to me.”

Norris said that the Amish often bring canoes into town to take to Tudor Hall Farm to go boating.

“They’ve always used the Macintosh Run for recreation,” Norris said.
source

http://somd.com/news/headlines/2008/8782.shtml

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