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Man Charged with Driving Drunk After Striking Officer in N. Columbus

COLUMBUS (Ken Hines/Kate Liebers) -- A police officer is recovering at a central Ohio hospital after she was pinned under a car while helping crash victims on the side of a busy highway on Thursday morning.

Officer Judith Lawrence was assisting motorists involved in a nine-car crash on I-71 Southbound at approximately 11:15 a.m. when a car traveled off the highway and slammed into one of the stationary vehicles that was involved in the accident. That vehicle struck the officer, who was pinned under the front bumper.

"Luckily she did have a car between her and the car that made the impact, nonetheless it pushed that car into her and knocked her down," Columbus Division of Police Spokesperson Sgt. Rich Weiner said.

Police accused the driver, Jarrett R. Lumpkin, 30, of driving drunk, intensifying the danger already inherent in traveling on the snow-covered highway.

Lumpkin was charged with two counts of aggravated vehicular assault as well as operating a vehicle while intoxicated, driving under suspension, and driving without a license.

Lawrence was transported to Riverside Methodist Hospital with broken bones and cuts. She is expected to make a full recovery, Columbus Division of Police Spokesperson Sgt. Rich Weiner said.

Police hope the crash will serve as a reminder to drivers to exercise extreme caution when traveling by accidents on snow-covered roads.

"If you do see an accident on the side of the road, or see an emergency vehicle on the side of the road, you need to get to the other side and slow down," he said.

Lawrence has served with the Columbus Division of Police for 28 years.
 
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