A police officer in Platteville, Colorado, is on paid leave after a train hit a cop car containing a handcuffed woman, with footage released Friday showing the moment of the crash.
The officer — whose name has yet to be released — pulled over Yareni Rios-Gonzalez on Sept. 16 after police in nearby Fort Lupton received a report of a road rage incident involving a gun, according to The Denver Post.
Rios-Gonzalez parked her car past a set of the railroad tracks while the officer stopped his vehicle directly on the tracks, according to the newspaper. Two Fort Lupton officers also arrived as backup.
Video from the Fort Lupton Police Department shows officers asking the woman to put her hands up and turn around as they stand on the tracks.
Rios-Gonzalez asked what was going on and said that she was “so confused” as police handcuffed her and placed her in the patrol vehicle.
The footage then shows a train blare its horn as it approaches, with one officer shouting, “Stay back!” just before the collision.
An attorney for Rios-Gonzalez said that the woman suffered multiple broken ribs, a broken arm, a fractured sternum and a number of head injuries but added that she is expected to survive, according to local NBC affiliate 9News.
You can watch the dramatic crash, starting at the 5:22 mark, below.
The attorney, Paul Wilkinson, told 9News that the doors were locked on the police vehicle.
“She was frantically trying to get out,” he said.
“She’s definitely upset about what happened. She doesn’t understand why she was left in the car. She was yelling to get their attention and could see the train coming.”
Wilkinson said it’s “unbelievable” that a cop would park on the tracks, according to The Denver Post.
Keith Millhouse, a rail safety consultant, told 9News that the collision could’ve been avoided.
“Never park a car on a set of train tracks for any amount of time, even if you think it’s abandoned,” Millhouse said, calling the incident “mind-boggling.”
The Denver Post reported Monday that the Platteville Police Department had put its officer on administrative leave. The Colorado State Patrol and Colorado Bureau of Investigation are reportedly investigating the crash, while Fort Lupton police are looking into the alleged road rage incident.
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