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Driver charged with striking state trooper with car in Westford; captured after fleeing traffic stop

A 34-year-old man was arrested after allegedly hitting a State Police trooper with his car in Westford after he fled a traffic stop early Thursday morning, police said.

At around 12:50 a.m., State Police was notified that a car, driven by Eric Duffy of Barre, Mass., was moving erratically on the southbound side of Route 495 in Methuen, according to State Police spokesman David Procopio. Troopers pulled over the yellow Honda Accord in the left lane after crossing into Lowell, he said.

Duffy turned off his engine but restarted it and sped away after refusing to follow a trooper’s instructions, Procopio said. He got off the highway at the Boston Road exit in Westford and pulled into a gas station.

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Duffy got out of his car and a trooper tried to use his taser to prevent him from driving away again, Procopio said. But Duffy got back in the car and backed into a police cruiser before driving forward and hitting a trooper, causing him to roll onto the hood of a cruiser and slide off, Procopio said.

The injured trooper was taken to Emerson Hospital in Concord with minor injuries, police said.

After hitting the trooper, Duffy drove onto Route 495 north and cruisers followed him before boxing his car in, Procopio said. He rear-ended the cruiser in front of him and was subsequently removed from his car.

Duffy fought with the troopers but they were eventually able to place him under arrest and take him to Lowell General Hospital for evaluation, Procopio said. A trooper was taken to the same hospital for injuries sustained in the fight, he said.

Duffy was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, assault and battery on a police officer, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, leaving the scene of a crash that caused personal injury, leaving the scene of a crash that caused property damage, resisting arrest, failure to stop for police, speeding, and a marked lanes violation.

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An arraignment date has not been set. Duffy remained in the hospital Thursday morning, police said.

In another incident on Thursday, a driver hit a State Police cruiser on Route 3 in Plymouth around 4:20 a.m. The trooper and driver were taken to a local hospital with “suspected minor injuries,” State Police said.


Bailey Allen can be reached at bailey.allen@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @baileyaallen.