Wannabe Cop Behind Wheel in Deadly NJ Crash That Killed an Officer: Investigators

Police say man who wanted to become a cop was driving the car that struck a police cruiser, killing a cop, during a pursuit in Millville

A wannabe cop was allegedly fleeing police Sunday when he struck a cop car, killing a Millville police officer and injuring his partner.

Millville Police Officer Chris Reeves, 40, died in the wreck at the corner of 3rd and Broad Streets around 2:15 a.m. Sunday.

Reeves is the first Millville cop ever killed in the line of duty.

Police say Timothy Seidel, 23, of Laurel Lake, N.J. was driving the Toyota Scion that hit Reeves' cruiser.

Reeves and his partner, Officer Jonathan Seidel (no relation to Timothy Seidel), were just called to join the pursuit when their cruiser was hit. Police say the impact killed Reeves and seriously injured his 27-year-old passenger. 

Officer Seidel remained hospitalized in stable condition Monday and may need surgery, cops said.

Investigators say that Timothy Seidel hoped to become a Millville Police officer and recently passed the civil service test. A letter was sent out Monday, coincidentally one day after the accident, informing Timothy Seidel that he was rejected because he doesn't meet residency requirements, police said.

Timothy Seidel is accused of causing the wreck that killed a Millville cop and badly injured his partner.

According to a press release from Cumberland County Prosecutor's Office, police were in pursuit of Timothy Seidel after he allegedly struck another cop car.

Timothy Seidel was also injured in the crash. He was airlifted to Cooper Hospital in critical condition.

He was charged Monday afternoon with second-degree vehicular homicide, second-degree aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated manslaughter, eluding police and related charges. His bail was set at $500,000 full cash or bond, according to prosecutors.

Reeves was an 8-year veteran of the Millville Police Department -- a husband and father to a 2-year-old boy. Reeves wife, Susan, is also a police officer.

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His friends say he always wanted to be a cop. "I like to think he died happy doing what he wanted to do," said Spencer Moore.

Before joining the Millville Police Department, Reeves served in the Marine Corps and also worked with the Millville Fire Department.

A black banner was draped over the front of the Millville Police Department Monday and all flags in the city were flown at half-staff in honor of Reeves.

Reeves funeral service will be held Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Lakeside Middle School with burial to follow at Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.

The Policemen's Benevolent Association set up a fund for Reeves' son. Donations can be sent to "Officer Christopher Reeves Fund" at P.O. Box 1142, Millville, NJ 08332.


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