A Moline Police officer was involved in a crash that killed a 13-year-old bicyclist shortly before 3 p.m. Tuesday.
An officer was dispatched to a disturbance near 41st Street and 12th Avenue, and was traveling south in the 1100 block of 34th Street, says a news release from Moline Police Chief Darren Gault.
A crash happened just south of 11th Avenue, where the squad car struck a 13-year-old boy on a bicycle.
The child, whose identity has not been released, was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced deceased later.
The Moline Police Department immediately asked Illinois State Police to respond to the scene. Illinois State Police District 7 troopers arrived shortly after 3 p.m. and “assumed control of the crash scene and the Moline Police squad car.”
The car is equipped with an Axon in-car video system. Illinois State Police requested their certified crash reconstruction specialists from the Traffic Crash Reconstruction Unit, as well as investigators from the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation in Zone 2.
Illinois State Police will conduct the independent investigation of the crash, and will provide a complete report to the state’s attorney when the investigation is complete.
The Moline Police Department will ensure the cooperation in transferring in-car video, body camera video, squad car data, interviews and any other items needed from Moline Police to the Illinois State Police.
Moline Police will conduct a separate internal affairs investigation to review policies, procedures and actions of the department personnel, the release says. An internal investigation is an employment law-related investigation. These investigations are conducted separately and have different purposes and outcomes.
The officer driving the squad car has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
“Placing an officer on leave is normal procedure to remove an officer from duty while an examination of the incident is conducted,” the release says. “The officer is also understandably distraught over the incident.”
“This is an is extraordinarily tragic and difficult loss of life. Our deepest sympathies are conveyed to the family during this difficult time,” the release says. “Words cannot describe this situation. We ask that the public keep everyone involved in their thoughts and prayers.”
A statement from the mayor
Moline Mayor Sangeetha Rayapati also responded with a statement.
“The City of Moline mourns the loss of life in a tragic event that occurred this afternoon,” she said in the release. “As Mayor of Moline my thoughts are with everyone involved in this situation. Unexpected tragedies do occur. May we hug our loved ones tighter this evening as we are reminded
of the unpredictability this world often hands us.”
“Our community will get through this difficult time together,” Rayaputi continued. “For now we need to let the investigation into this event take its course.”
“The City of Moline Police Chief Gault will work with the Illinois State Police to ensure full cooperation into the investigation.”
Autopsy tentatively set
Rock Island County Coroner Brian Gustafson said an autopsy is tentatively scheduled for Thursday.