A 32-year-old Enfield man was behind the wheel of a pickup truck that struck a Connecticut police cruiser, killing a state trooper, police said Friday.
Michael Pajak, 32, of Enfield was speeding Thursday afternoon when the truck he was driving veered into a state police cruiser parked in the northbound right shoulder during a traffic stop, police said. Trooper Kenneth Hall was pronounced dead at a Springfield, Mass. hospital.
Pajak and a passenger in the truck, Jenny Benvenuto, 33, of Windsor, also were taken to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield. Benvenuto was in critical condition Friday, but there was no information on Pajak.
Pajak had not been charged in connection with Hall’s death on Friday. Police said their investigation was continuing.
Pajak has a criminal record that includes a citation for distracted driving in May, according to the Judicial Branch website. He was convicted of driving with a suspended license in 2000 and served time in prison on drug charges, according to the records, which were first reported by the Hartford Courant.
A police processional was planned along I-91 in northern Connecticut on Friday afternoon to bring Hall’s body from the hospital to a funeral home.
State police said Hall’s death was the 12th fatal motor vehicle accident involving a Connecticut state trooper or auxiliary trooper.