Md. FBI agent, fire marshal die in highway crash
Fire Marshal Sander Cohen stopped to help FBI agent Carlos Wolff after a crash when they were both hit by another car
ROCKVILLE, Md. — An FBI agent and a state fire marshal were killed Friday while standing on the shoulder of a highway at the scene of a traffic crash, Maryland State Police said.
FBI Supervisory Special Agent Carlos Wolff, 36, and Deputy Chief State Fire Marshal Sander Cohen, 33, died when they were struck by a car as they waited for help after Wolff's car crashed on Interstate 270 in Rockville.
Police said Cohen, deputy chief with the Maryland Fire Marshal's Office, called state police at about 10 p.m. Friday and reported he had come upon the scene of a single-car crash in the fast lane of I-270 southbound. He asked for assistance, blocked the lane with his personal vehicle and activated his emergency flashers.
As Wolff — the driver of the damaged vehicle — stood with Cohen on the shoulder of the lane, a car swerved and struck both men. Both men were thrown over the jersey wall into the northbound side. Police said at least one was struck by a northbound vehicle.
Our deepest condolences go out to the family, friends, and colleagues of FBI Supervisory Special Agent Carlos Wolff, who passed away last night after being involved in a motor vehicle accident. Please keep SSA Wolff and his family in your thoughts and prayers.— FBI (@FBI) December 9, 2017
Col. William Pallozzi, superintendent of the Maryland State Police, said Cohen had no idea Wolff was an FBI agent when he stopped to help him. "He stopped, he helped someone in need, and now he has joined the ranks of Maryland's fallen heroes," Pallozzi said.
Police said the driver of a Honda — apparently trying to avoid the stopped vehicles — swerved to the left but struck both men.
Cohen was pronounced dead the scene. Wolff was taken to Suburban Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Three other people were taken to area hospitals with injuries that were not life-threatening.
The cause of the initial crash involving Wolff's vehicle remains under investigation.
Cohen was also a lieutenant with the Rockville Volunteer Fire Department.
MD State Police say off-duty Deputy Chief Sander Cohen with the Office of the State Fire Marshal died last night trying to help a driver in an accident on 270. The man he helped, FBI agent Carlos Wolff, also hit & killed by a vehicle that went onto the shoulder. pic.twitter.com/ytDdzrM0jG— Tom Roussey (@tomrousseyABC7) December 9, 2017
Gordon Johnson, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Field Office, said Wolff had worked for 11 years in the investigative division at the FBI's headquarters in Washington, D.C.
"The loss will be felt by the entire FBI family, and our thoughts and prayers are with the Wolff family and friends," Johnson said.