U of M police officer injured when suspected drunk driver slams into squad car

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A University of Minnesota police officer and two others were injured when a suspected drunk driver slammed into the back of his squad car early Saturday morning.

Officer Geoff Maciejewski was outside of his vehicle conducting a traffic stop on Highway 280 at University Avenue at 12:41 a.m. when the suspected drunk driver slammed into the back of his squad car, which was pushed into the vehicle that had been pulled over, according to a Department of Public Safety email news release.

Maciejewski, the driver who was pulled over and the suspected drunk driver all suffered non-life threatening injuries in the incident.

The squad car's emergency lights were flashing at the time of the crash, the release notes.

The driver who crashed into the squad car has been identified as a 34-year-old man from River Falls, Wisconsin. He could face charges that include DWI, criminal vehicular operation and driving with a suspended license, the release says.

This incident happened during the Minnesota Department of Public Safety's crackdown on drunken driving. More than 300 agencies statewide are part of this extra DWI enforcement campaign, which started Nov. 25 and is running on the weekends through Jan. 2, 2016.

Last weekend, there were approximately 300 DWIs reported across the state, the Minnesota Department of Traffic Safety tweeted.

Many agencies have taken to social media to promote the campaign and encourage those celebrating this holiday season to plan a sober ride home.

Last year, 25,258 motorists – that averages to 70 a day – were arrested in Minnesota for drunken driving, and alcohol is a factor in one of every four deaths on Minnesota’s roads, DPS notes.

In 2014, 88 people were killed in drunk driving-related crashes, the agency says.

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