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Fargo police cruiser hits car while driving through red light

Fargo, N.D., police officers write a report detailing the damage to Mitchell Krauter's Chevrolet Cruze after an hit it with his squad car Friday afternoon, August 1, 2014. Krauter and his passenger, Lindsey Gress, were headed northbound on Fourth Street before being struck by the squad car which ran a red light on Main Avenue going east. Nick Wagner / The Forum

The collision happened about 1:25 p.m. at Fourth Street and Main Avenue as an officer was responding to a report of children on the railroad bridge over the Red River. No one was injured, but both vehicles were damaged.

Officer Wes Libner was eastbound on Main Avenue when he stopped at the stoplight, turned on his lights, activated his siren and entered the intersection when he believed it was clear, Fargo police Sgt. Chris Nichtern said.

Mitchell Krauter was driving his new Chevrolet Cruze through the intersection, heading north on Fourth Street, when his car was struck on the driver’s side.

Krauter’s passenger, Lindsey Gress of Fargo, estimated that his car sustained about $8,000 to $10,000 in damages. Krauter could not be reached for comment.

Vehicles that were turning blocked visibility for both of the drivers, said Nichtern and Lindsey Gress, a passenger in Krauter’s car.

A witness, Philip Nelson, said he was traveling east on Main Avenue when the police car passed him with no sirens on and minimal lights.

“I was very surprised at the fact that the officer had no sirens on and was really not using all of his lights when he was going well above the speed of traffic,” Nelson said.

Nelson said he heard the police car use brief loud sound bursts three times before entering the intersection. He did not recall whether the police car stopped at the intersection.

Police are investigating the accident, said Nichtern, who estimated $3,500 in damage to the squad car.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Adrian Glass-Moore at (701) 241-5599

Adrian Glass-Moore

Readers are encouraged to reach Adrian Glass-Moore at (701) 241-5599 or with comments, criticisms and tips. He joined The Forum as its night reporter in 2014.