A midnight police chase in Fairfax County ended in a head-on collision Thursday morning, leaving one man dead and a police officer critically injured.
Police said the incident began just after midnight, when police responded to a report of a domestic dispute in the 4800 block of Tapestry Drive in Fairfax, not far from the George Mason University campus.
Thursday morning's fatal crash occurred on Little River Turnpike at the Beltway.
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The officer’s condition was not known after a ‘physical confrontation’ at the scene.
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A dry day and strong breezes helped make the fire more intense.
An officer approached a man, identified as 40-year-old Cicero I. Limberea, of no fixed address, in front of a home on that street. The officer briefly spoke with Limberea, who then got into a sport-utility vehicle and left.
Police said that Limberea sped away and turned into oncoming traffic on Little River Turnpike. Limberea drove for several miles in the wrong lanes, heading east in the westbound lanes and nearly striking several other cars.
The officer who had spoken to Limberea pursued him from the eastbound lanes, and other officers began arriving as backup.
As Limberea crossed over the Capital Beltway, one of the responding officers, who was driving in the proper lane, collided with the SUV, police said.
Limberea died at the scene, police said.
The officer, described only as a 28-year-old man from the Mason Police District, suffered numerous injuries, but they were not considered life-threatening, according to police. He was trapped inside his cruiser and had to be cut out of it before he could be taken to a hospital.