FACT Team Probes Squad Car-Pedestrian Mishap: Victim Critically Hurt

By Peter Ambrose
By Jeff Neumeyer

August 27, 2010 Updated Aug 27, 2010 at 5:39 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, IN (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- A vehicle crash investigative unit in Allen County is putting together a puzzle, looking at evidence to see if a Fort Wayne patrol officer is in any way at fault in a squad car mishap that critically injured a pedestrian.

The incident is getting the full attention of what's called the Fatal Accident Crash Team, or "FACT Team”.

Because a cop was behind the wheel of the car striking the pedestrian, police want to be extra thorough in finding out what really went down.

Around two a.m. Friday, patrol officer Kevin Jolas was cruising in the 3200 block of North Clinton Street responding to a non-emergency call, when police say 34-year old Rodney Haynes was struck trying to cross the street.

Chief York says the officer's squad car lights and siren were not activated at the time.

At last report, Haynes remained in critical condition.

York says an initial review indicates excessive speed was not a factor.

Chief Rusty York/FWPD: " We obviously are concerned for the officer, but also go through a procedure where we test the officer for any impairment, which we did and found none at this stage, certainly with alcohol, and we don't anticipate finding any other impairment."

York says from the preliminary findings, it doesn't appear alcohol was a factor for Rodney Haynes either.

When a police officer is involved in a shooting or serious car crash, it’s natural that questions would arise about police reviewing the conduct of a colleague.

The FACT Team is made up of Fort Wayne, Allen County and New Haven officers, and consequently, Officer Jolas isn't being judged exclusively by officers from his own department.

Jolas has been on the Fort Wayne force five years.

He transferred to the department from the Huntington City Police Department.

York says Jolas has an exemplary record.

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