A Smyrna, GA, police officer was killed in the line of duty Monday night when a man accused of driving drunk crashed into his cruiser, according to investigators.
Officer Christopher Eric Ewing was killed in the crash, which mangled his patrol vehicle, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. Ewing was married and had three teenage daughters, according to the department.
The other driver, 35-year-old Robert Lorenzo Cox of Duluth, was taken to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital and later released. According to an arrest warrant, the patrol vehicle’s lights and siren were activated when Cox turned his Chevrolet Tahoe left into its path.
After the crash, a witness said they saw Cox remove two beer bottles from the Chevy and throw them into a trash can before emergency crews arrived. Investigating Georgia State Patrol troopers said they verified the witness’ account using surveillance footage.
Cox was arrested Tuesday morning on charges of driving under the influence and homicide by vehicle in the first degree, both felonies. He is also facing a host of misdemeanor traffic charges, including tampering with evidence, open container violation, failure to yield and not wearing a seat belt.