Trooper Crash

A man allegedly impaired by drugs struck a trooper head on causing injuries to both parties.

The State Police are investigating a two vehicle crash that occurred on Tuesday at approximately 6:30 p.m. on State Route 55 in the Town of Bethel.

Trooper Brandon Smith was traveling east on State Route 55 in a 2013 Ford Explorer, when 1994 Jeep Cherokee was traveling west on State Route 55.

Trooper Smith observed the Jeep drift off the north shoulder and ultimately reenter the eastbound lane that Trooper SMith was traveling in. The trooper tried to take evasive action but was unable to avoid the Jeep.

The Jeep struck the trooper head on injuring both parties. Both were transported to Catskill Regional Hospital and treated for non-life threatening injuries.

The operator of the Jeep, identified as Jesse VanEps, age 18, of Eldred, N.Y. was arrested and charged with Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI Drugs). He was released with appearance tickets.

He is scheduled to appear in court next week.