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Arizona police officer fatally hit at traffic stop, officials say

Clayton Townsend, a Salt River police officer, was struck during a traffic stop on Tuesday.
(Fox 10 Phoenix)

An Arizona police officer is fatally hit by a vehicle while conducting a traffic stop on Tuesday night, the officials said.

The Salt River police officer has been identified as Clayton Townsend, according to Fox 10 Phoenix. Salt River is located about 67 miles east of Phoenix.

The officer had the traffic stop on the northbound Loop 101 just after 6 a.m., the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) said, according to Phoenix KPNX-TV. As he approached the car, he stopped at the side of the road and was hit by another vehicle. The oncoming vehicle hit the car that stopped, the DPS said.

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Townsend was rushed to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead around 6:30 pm, according to the DPS.

The officials of the investigation into the cause of the crash, the station reported.

Townsend, who had been with the department for five years, leaves a wife and a 10-month-old child, the report said.

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