- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
A St. Mary’s sheriff’s deputy was released Monday night from a hospital, the agency reports, after he was treated for injuries suffered in a motorcycle accident that took place earlier that day as he was assisting a police academy course in Prince George’s County.
Cpl. Joseph L. Somerville Jr., a 17-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, suffered incapacitating injuries when the accident occurred, according to the sheriff’s office, on Baltimore Avenue near Paint Branch Parkway in College Park. Somerville was providing instructor support for a basic motor officer course, hosted by the University of Maryland’s Department of Public Safety Training Academy.
Somerville and an officer from another jurisdiction both were riding motorcycles when “that officer went down, and then [Somerville] went down,” according to Cindy Allen, a spokesperson for the St. Mary’s sheriff’s office. “Neither collided with anything.”
Allen referred further questions about the accident to the Prince George’s County Police Department, which is investigating the matter, including the weather and pavement conditions at that time and location on Monday, a time of widespread rainfall in the region. No additional information was available from that agency as of midday Tuesday.
After the accident, a helicopter crew flew Somerville to MedStar Washington Hospital Center.
“He was released last night,” Allen said Tuesday morning at the sheriff’s office. “He’s at home recuperating,” she said, and he now is on medical leave.
Somerville recently completed a 120-hour University of Maryland’s Department of Public Safety Police Motor Officer Instructor’s Training Program, which made him certified to provide basic and recurrent police motor training to law enforcement officers, according to the sheriff’s office. The agency’s Motor Unit began in Leonardtown in 1994, and since that year, the sheriff’s office has trained seven deputies as motor officers, as the unit has expanded to include community policing, traffic safety and special assignments.