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Temecula CHP officer injured by suspected DUI driver

A Temecula-based California Highway Patrol (CHP) officer was injured at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, October 13, as he conducted traffic control on Pala Temecula Road.

As the officer, a 13-year veteran of the CHP, was trying to manage traffic near a two-car collision, Nicholas Gabbard, a 27-year-old from Temecula, approached the collision site in his 2007 Infinity M45 but did not slow down.

According to a CHP press release, the officer realized Gabbard was approaching the collision “at a high rate of speed” and did not seem to have the intention of slowing.

The officer attempted to run out of the way but the vehicle struck him in the ankle as Gabbard drove through.

Gabbard then fled southbound on Pala Temecula Road toward the previous collision. As Gabbard reached the collision scene, he struck an AMR ambulance and fire truck with his Infinity, a part of which became lodged within the wheel well of the fire truck.

CHP officers then took Gabbard into custody, placing him under arrest for felony DUI, felony hit and run and driving on a suspended driver’s license. The injured officer was transported to a local hospital for treatment to his injuries and later released.

The incident is still under investigation.


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