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County Correction Officer dies in crash

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September 18, 2003

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County Correction Officer dies in crash

Officer Down: Robert J. Sawicki - [Plattsburgh , New York]


CO dies in crash
Drives motorcycle into overturned truck
By ANNA JOLLY, Staff Writer

BEEKMANTOWN NY — A Clinton County correction officer died Thursday morning when his motorcycle struck the back of a rolled-over tractor-trailer.

Robert J. Sawicki, 26, of Rouses Point was driving his motorcycle north on Interstate 87 near exit 40 around 1:45 a.m.

Moments earlier, a tractor-trailer driven by Ladislau Reblich, 59, of Quebec had slid off the road and overturned onto the passenger side.

The truck’s cab came to rest on the grass, while the undercarriage blocked the driving lane, said State Police Investigator George Dyer.

Reflective stripes on the truck were not visible as Sawicki drove up I-87, Dyer said.

Sawicki drove into the truck and was pronounced dead at the accident site around 3 a.m.

An autopsy performed at CVPH Medical Center Thursday concluded that he died of blunt trauma to the head and chest.

Reblich was not injured. He was ticketed for crossing hazardous markings.

An accident-reconstruction team was called Thursday, and Dyer is waiting for that report.

Sawicki was wearing a helmet and face shield. Dyer believes he was on his way home to Rouses Point.

Clinton County Sheriff Dave Favro said the mood was somber at the jail Thursday as friends and co-workers remembered the young man.

"They are developing a state of comradeship during this sad time," he said.

An honor guard will be arranged for Sawicki’s funeral, and a sheriff’s patrol car will provide an escort.

"They are trying to think of ways to help the family," Favro said.

Favro, elected to Office 9 months ago, reports Sawicki began working for the Sheriff’s Department three years ago, Favro said, and has had several opportunities to meet Sawicki during that time.

"He liked his job and was proud of it," Favro said. "We had a lot of hopes for him in the future."

Anna Jolly can be reached by e-mail: ajolly@pressrepublican.com

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