Officer involved in Gaithersburg vehicle accident placed on paid administrative leave

The Montgomery County police officer involved in a motor vehicle accident that left a 15-year-old high school student in critical condition Friday has been placed on paid administrative leave as officials investigate the case.

Cpl. Raymond Bennett, an 18-year veteran of the Montgomery County Police Department, was driving a police cruiser when it struck the teenager near Watkins Mill High School in Gaithersburg, police said.

The teenager, who is a student at Watkins Mill and whose name was not released, was seriously injured. Bennett was responding to a fight after a football game at the school, police said. The incident occurred about 9:15 p.m. on Apple Ridge Road, the street on which the school is located.

A Montgomery County news release Saturday said the female pedestrian entered the street between two marked police cars and was struck by the second vehicle. Officers, according to the release, began administering first aid and the victim was taken to a hospital.

Three other police officers, who responded to the incident, were also placed on routine paid administrative leave during the investigation.

Keith Alexander covers crime, specifically D.C. Superior Court cases for The Washington Post. He has covered dozens of crime stories from Banita Jacks, the Washington woman charged with killing her four daughters, to the murder trial of slain federal intern Chandra Levy.
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