A 19-year-old man remained in critical condition Thursday, a day after he was struck by an off-duty Buffalo police detective on her way to work, Buffalo police Capt. Jeff Rinaldo said.
Police sources identified the driver as Mary Pat Kaempf, 62, a detective who oversees warrants and works out of the Buffalo Police Department's headquarters at 74 Franklin St. She has worked for the Buffalo police for nearly 40 years.
The victim is a University at Buffalo student who lives on campus, UB officials confirmed. "We are in the process of reaching the family and sending a student response team to the hospital to offer assistance," said UB spokesman John DellaContrada. The student's name has not been released. He was being treated at Erie County Medical Center. He suffered a serious head injury, said a source with knowledge of the investigation.
The student is from Long Island, according to a police source.
The incident took place at about 5:45 a.m. on Main Street near Custer Street, close to UB South Campus. Sunrise was at 6:05 a.m. Wednesday.
Main Street was closed to traffic in the area Wednesday morning.
The detective stopped her car and was cooperating with the investigation, Rinaldo said. Kaempf voluntarily gave a blood sample and police are planning to examine her cellphone, said the source with knowledge of the investigation which is being handled by the Buffalo police accident investigation unit.
According to the preliminary investigation, the student stepped out into the roadway where there is a corner but no crosswalk or traffic signal, Rinaldo said. The student was struck in the lane closest to the sidewalk. Investigators aren't sure what the student, who was wearing a black hoodie, blue shorts over gray sweatpants, and sandals, was doing out so early in the morning.
On Tuesday, in an unrelated incident, a Buffalo police officer struck a 4-year-old child with a patrol car, Rinaldo said. The incident occurred on Oneida Street. The child suffered a minor injury, Rinaldo said.
A little over a month ago, an on-duty Buffalo police officer fatally struck a pedestrian on Hertel Avenue while responding to a call. That police officer was in a patrol vehicle and did not have the lights and siren on at the time of the accident.