By Angela Deines
Topeka Capital Journal – March 23, 2017
A Shawnee County sheriff’s deputy was taken to a local hospital Wednesday evening after a one-vehicle rollover crash on a gravel road just northwest of Topeka, Sheriff Herman Jones said.
According to the Kansas Highway Patrol crash logs, Derek Bledsoe, 25, was identified as the deputy who was driving the 2009 Ford Crown Victoria that left the road for an unknown reason, flipped and came to rest on its’ top.
The crash was reported about 4:50 p.m. on N.W. Landon Road, about a half-mile north of US-24 highway.
“It was hard to discern because it was a mumble there,” Jones said, describing the call from the deputy. “At that particular time, we were trying to discern what that was and trying to locate our officer there. We discovered it was one of our vehicles.”
The deputy, who Jones said was wearing a seat belt, sustained what were described as minor injuries that included a cut on his hand. The officer was able to walk away from the crash before being taken by ambulance to Stormont Vail Regional hospital.
A utility pole snapped as result of the crash, and Westar Energy and FreeState Electric Cooperative had power lines involved.
The sheriff’s office didn’t identify the deputy, who will be held overnight for observation, and Kansas Highway Patrol troopers were investigating the crash.
Jones said “seat belts save lives.” He said the crash was like something happening to one of his “kids.”
“There was a sigh of relief for so many of us at the scene when he was conscious and talking,” he said, “and more so when he walked away.”