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Driver Cited After Crashing into Stopped Talent Police Car
Sergeant Mark Byrd
Oregon State Police - Central Point
Office: (541) 776-6114
Chief Bob Rector
Talent Police Department
Office: (541) 535-1253 ext. 303

Photograph links valid for 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
Two people received minor injuries Saturday night when their car crashed into the back of an unoccupied Talent Police Department patrol car that was stopped and positioned in the left northbound lane of Interstate 5 about six miles south of Medford to prevent any vehicles from running into a refrigerator lying in the traffic lane.
According to Oregon State Police (OSP) Sergeant Mark Byrd, on March 16, 2008 at 9:23 p.m. OSP troopers responded to a report of a refrigerator in the middle of the northbound lanes of Interstate 5 between milepost 20 and 21. As troopers were responding, a Talent Police Department officer monitored the call and also responded to assist. The Talent Police Department member located the refrigerator laying in the left northbound lane, activated the patrol car's emergency lights and stopped in the lane to protect northbound traffic from hitting the refrigerator.
At approximately 9:33 p.m., an OSP trooper and her recruit arrived on scene to assist with moving the refrigerator out of the roadway. The OSP recruit maneuvered the OSP patrol car to assist with traffic control, and as the OSP trooper and Talent police officer started walking up to move the refrigerator out of the lane of travel a northbound 1990 Subaru Legacy crashed into the back of the Talent patrol car. The OSP trooper and Talent police officer were able to avoid getting hit by the sliding vehicles.
The Subaru's driver, JAMES M. BENDER, age 26, from Ashland, received minor injuries but did not require medical transportation. A female passenger in the Subaru, JILLIAN R. JACKSON, age 27, from Ashland, also sustained minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital by a friend.
As a result of the crash investigation by OSP troopers from the Central Point Area Command office, BENDER was cited for Careless Driving and Driving Uninsured.
Jackson County Sheriff's Office, Phoenix Police Department, ODOT, Mercy Flights Ambulance, and the local fire district assisted at the scene.