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Ludowici chief home after injury
Robert Poppell Ludo PD Chief 082014
Robert Poppell is chief of the Ludowici Police Department. - photo by File photo

Ludowici Police Chief Robert Poppell was home Friday afternoon, after being taken to Wayne Memorial Hospital complaining of shoulder pain after his patrol car was hit by a pickup and burst into flames Thursday morning.

Poppell sustained a shoulder injury.

Georgia State Trooper Robert Balkcom said Poppell was in the center turning lane on Highway 84 west of Ludowici and running the tag reader on his cruiser when a 2010 Chevy 2500 pickup, driven by James Madray, 63, of Jesup, hit Poppell’s car. The truck, which belongs to CSX transportation, was headed west when the collision occurred.

The truck driven by Madray, who told authorities he had fallen asleep, struck Poppell’s 2007 Ford Crown Victoria in the left rear of the patrol car spinning it and pushing it 115 feet, before stopping and bursting into flames.

Madray was not injured. He was cited for failure to maintain lanes and not wearing a seat belt.

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