An officer with the West Deer Township (PA) Police Department has filed suit against two private enterprises—a power company and a tree trimming company—after he says he suffered trauma when he witnessed a man being electrocuted by downed power lines.

According to, Officer Edward Newman says he watched as Terry Colton was electrocuted and burned after coming in contact with a fallen utility wire in April 2018.

Newman contends in his lawsuit against West Penn Power and Asplundh Tree Experts that the incident was the result of negligence of those enterprises, and that the event has caused him significant emotional distress.

Newman inhaled the smoke from Colton's burning body as the man perished before his eyes, according to the lawsuit.