On the day he was scheduled to appear in court to face a DUI charge, an off-duty Pennsylvania state trooper was killed in a head-on auto accident while driving the wrong way on the Schuylkill Expressway. Police investigators said Cpl. John Quigg of Wyndmoor in Montgomery County drove his Honda Accord the wrong way up the Spring Garden exit ramp onto I-76 shortly after 1 a.m. early Wednesday morning. Driving into oncoming eastbound traffic, he crashed head-on into a Mercury Marquis driven by 23-year-old Philadelphia resident Chantelle Harper. Severely injured, Quigg, a father of four, died at Hahnemann University Hospital shortly after the accident. Harper, who also suffered serious personal injuries in the crash, was transported to the University of Pennsylvania hospital where she was reported to be in good condition after surgery to repair several broken bones.
In one of those odd twists of fate, the 24-year Pennsylvania State Police veteran was an accident reconstructionist and drug-recognition expert. Quigg routinely supervised State Police sobriety checkpoints. The officer had been on desk duty since running his car into a guardrail last December. At the time of that accident, Quigg was found to have a blood-alcohol level of 0.30, well over Pennsylvania’s legal limit of 0.08. Quigg’s attorney in that DUI case, Timothy Woodward, Sr. has previously reported to the court that Quigg completed alcohol rehabilitation following his DUI arrest.
Police investigators are not yet certain whether Quigg drove onto the freeway in the wrong direction inadvertently or intentionally. Investigators have stated that neither driver showed obvious signs of impairment. Toxicology tests have been ordered and the motor vehicle accident is still under investigation.
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