By PoliceOne Staff
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — An Illinois State trooper was killed Thursday night in an on-duty traffic accident with a semi-truck.
James Sauter, 28, was in his squad when it was struck by a semi from behind, causing both vehicles to burst into flames. It is unclear whether Sauter’s lights were on or why he was stopped, Police Director Hiram Grau said at a news conference.
“Our accident reconstruction team is working," Grau said. "It was a pretty horrific accident. We don’t have all the details yet."
As a cadet, Sauter was awarded the Lifesaving Medal in October of 2008 for saving a woman who had been involved in a motorcycle accident, according to the Chicago Tribune.
"Trooper Sauter was a very talented, wonderful police officer," Grau said. "As you can imagine, his fellow troopers, his fellow officers are devastated.”