WNY Native Hurt On Duty In North Carolina

January 7, 2011 Updated Jan 7, 2011 at 12:20 AM EDT

By Lou Chilelli

January 7, 2011 Updated Jan 7, 2011 at 12:20 AM EDT

A crash during a high speed chase in North Carolina, injuries two police officers...one of them a native of Amherst. Officer Keith Trietley of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department was trapped in his wrecked patrol car for almost half an hour on December 30th. Police say the Amherst native was struck head on, when a suspect drove his pick up truck into the path of Trietey at high speed.

Witnesses report that the truck was traveling at 80 to 90 miles an hour. Trietley suffered two broken arms, a shattered knee cap and broken right leg. Investigators credit Trietley's seat belt for saving his life. Trietley was transported to a local hospital where he has under gone multiple surgeries. He was responding as back up to assist another officer who had just fired shots at a fleeing suspect. The suspect had rammed his truck into the officer's car twice. That officer received minor injuries. Residents in Trietey's neighborhood are upset that someone would purposely hurt the well liked officer.

The suspect was also injured. His injuries are not life threatening. He has been charged with multiple crimes. It's not known how long it will take for either officer to recover enough to return to work.