Kenai police car totaled

The City of Kenai is in the process of replacing a police cruiser totaled in a traffic stop last month.

On March 8, Kenai Police stopped Brealand Garrett II, 27, of Soldotna on Bridge Access Road south of Warren Ames Bridge at 7:47 p.m. Garrett was arrested for driving under the influence and three counts of misconduct involving a controlled substance, according to the police report.

About an hour later while officers were still on scene, a southbound Honda car driven by Anna Nisler, 19, of Kenai, rear-ended the parked police cruiser with Garrett inside in custody, according to the report.

At the time of the crash, Kenai Police Officer Casey Hershberger was standing at the open right rear door of the cruiser, one of two police vehicles on scene. Both police cars were parked off the southbound side of the road with the red and blue lights illuminated when the impact occurred, according to the report.

Garrett, Nisler and Hershberger were all transported to Central Peninsula Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Alaska State Troopers assisted Kenai police with the crash investigation.

Nisler was served a summons for overtaking and passing a parked emergency vehicle, resulting in personal injury.

Kenai Police Chief Gus Sandahl said because the extensive damage sustained to the vehicle rendered it totaled, the department would need to obtain a replacement sedan as soon as possible. Sandahl has put in a request for the purchase of a 2014 Ford Interceptor Sedan from Kendall Ford in Wasilla for $27,770. The price includes road ready package and reverse sensing, he said.

An ordinance to appropriate the funds for a replacement police cruiser will be voted on at the next Kenai City Council meeting April 16. Sandahl said the insurance proceeds from the driver at fault are expected to be sufficient for the replacement of the vehicle.

Kenai Municipal Code 7.15.050 “allows the city to purchase equipment without giving an opportunity for competitive bidding if the equipment is purchased under the contract of another governmental agency,” according to the ordinance.

Sandahl said the city has purchased police vehicles through the State of Alaska fleet contract before and helps to ensure the city pays the lowest available cost. Through a competitive process, Ford dealerships across the state bid on Police Interceptors and Kendall Ford provided the city the best fleet price, he said.

The new sedan will arrive if the ordinance is passed and will be fitted with the light bar and other police modifications at the city maintenance facility. Meanwhile, the totaled cruiser is currently at the city shop waiting to be relieved of its service.

Reach Dan Balmer at daniel.balmer@peninsulaclarion.com.

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