Community Mourns Death Of Perryopolis Police Officer

CBS Pittsburgh

PERRYOPOLIS (KDKA) – The death of Officer Richard Champion marks the first time that a Perryopolis Police officer has been killed in the line of duty.

According to officials at the scene, the two-vehicle accident happened on Route 51 in Perryopolis around 1:30 p.m. Sunday.

Witnesses say Champion’s car was in pursuit when he crashed into an SUV, then caught fire as they watched in horror.

After Champion’s car caught fire, witnesses say they tried to extinguish it, but weren’t able to. The witnesses say Champion’s car was locked, one person even tried using a hammer to get into the car, but was unsuccessful.

Community members in the small, tight-knit town were left somber by the news.

Police Chief Roger Beadling says Officer Champion’s wife was with her mother when officers explained the tragic events.

“They came down to the station last night about 6 p.m., we spoke with her…

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