Cop hospitalized after wreck
Veteran Gwinnett policeman's car flips over on U.S. 29

LAWRENCEVILLE - An afternoon crash on U.S. Highway 29 left a member of the Gwinnett County Police Department hospitalized in Atlanta after his car flipped.

Gwinnett police spokeswoman Cpl. Illana Spellman could not release the man's name or rank Tuesday but said he's been with the department for 32 years.

"The identity of the officer will be released when his family has been properly notified," Spellman said.

The man remains in fair condition at Atlanta Medical Center. Spellman could not comment on what type of injuries the man sustained.

Three vehicles were involved in the 3:33 p.m. accident on U.S. 29 near Ga. Highway 316, but no other injuries were reported.

Prior to the accident, the officer was driving northbound on U.S. 29 in an unmarked 2004 Chevrolet Impala behind two other vehicles, Spellman said.

Kharis Hillman, 24, of Lawrenceville stopped suddenly in a 2007 Toyota Yaris to make a left turn, causing the driver of a 1988 Jeep Camanche behind her, Steven Mincey, 43, of Winder, to stop, Spellman said.

The officer swerved to miss the two vehicles but clipped the Jeep. He then struck a steep embankment, causing his vehicle to flip over the U.S. 29 shoulder, Spellman said.

The officer was transported to Atlanta once he was freed from the accident scene, Spellman said.

"For some reason, Gwinnett Medical Center couldn't accept another patient," said Spellman, "so they did divert him to (Atlanta Medical Center)."

Spellman described the condition of the police vehicle as "poor," with a front passenger-side wheel that was broken off by the impact, she said.

Police near the scene closed U.S. 29 until about 5 p.m. Investigators don't believe speed was a factor in the accident.

Everyone involved was properly restrained, Spellman said.