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Tenn. cop killed after fire truck flips onto cruiser

The cruiser and truck both slid in the same spot due to icy conditions

Duty Death: Michael Slagle - [Knoxville, Tennessee]

WATE 6- Knoxville

KNOXVILLE — A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper was killed in a wreck as a result of the icy conditions Friday morning.

The accident happened just before 7 a.m. near the intersection of Longmire Lane and Emory Road near Corryton in Northeast Knox County.

(ODMP Image)
(ODMP Image)

Trooper Michael Slagle, 53, was driving in his cruiser, when the vehicle slid off the side of Longmire Road while he was on his way to work. He was able to call for help.

A Rural/Metro firetruck also lost control in the same spot, slipping off the side of the road and landing on top of the cruiser with the trooper still inside.

Around noon, Slagle was reportedly still inside the cruiser and was unconscious as crews worked to remove him. He was unable to be revived at the scene.

But THP later reported that the trooper had died of natural causes, reportedly a heart attack.

It's unclear if he died before or after the firetruck landed on top of his cruiser.

"Trooper Slagle was a 26-year veteran of the Tennessee Highway Patrol. He was a model trooper and a good man. It is a very sad day for our Highway Patrol family and all who knew Michael," Colonel Tracy Trott said. "Our prayers go out to his family during this difficult time."

In addition to the trooper, one firefighter sustained minor injuries as did a bystander. Both were transported to local hospitals.

Trooper Michael Slagle joined the Tennessee Highway Patrol in 1986. Originally from Grainger County, he was initially assigned to Campbell County.

During his tenure, he served in both Union and Knox Counties before his current assignment in the Supreme Court detail in Knox County.

Trooper Slagle became a field training officer in 2000. Outside of his duties as a state trooper, he also helped provide security for the University of Tennessee marching band in 2003.

Prior to becoming a state trooper, Trooper Slagle served as a Deputy Sheriff for the Grainger County Sheriff's Office from 1978-1985.

He is a 1978 graduate of Rutledge High School in Grainger County.

Trooper Slagle is survived by his wife and one daughter. Funeral arrangements are pending at this time.

Reprinted with permission from WATE 6

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