LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A Los Angeles police officer lost his leg after being struck by a suspected drunk driver in one of two crashes that shut down the entire 405 Freeway last week.
Officer Fadi Chelico was standing on the side of the freeway during a traffic stop last Monday night when he was struck and pinned between the suspect vehicle and his police cruiser. His leg was ultimately severed.
A fellow officer posted an image of Chelico in his hospital bed and described him as being in good spirits and already talking about going back to work. Immediately after the crash, authorities said the officer had suffered a serious leg injury but was expected to survive.
A GoFundMe page seeking to raise $50,000 to help Chelico and his family has so far raised nearly $30,000 in the four days since it was established.
The driver that struck the officer was identified by police as 34-year-old Douglas Donovan, of Woodland Hills, who was arrested on felony DUI charges. His passenger was taken to a hospital with minor injuries.
The crash closed all northbound lanes for hours early Tuesday morning. A separate crash briefly shut down all lanes on the other side of the freeway at about the same time.
That wasn’t the only traffic chaos to happen that morning. An erratic police pursuit also ran through the area amid the freeway closures and crash investigations at about the same time.