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What started as a routine traffic stop in Northampton County Tuesday morning ended with a Pennsylvania State Police corporal shot three times and a suspect in custody, state police said.
Daniel Khalil Clary, 22, is charged with attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, aggravated assault and other related offenses, according to the Northampton County District Attorney.
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The ordeal unfolded shortly before 11 a.m. in Plainfield Township on PA State Route 33 near State Route 191 when a trooper pulled over a Pontiac sedan for speeding.
The trooper returned to his car assuming the exchange was over, but the driver, identified by officials as Clary, got out of his car and flagged the trooper to approach, police said.
When the trooper again talked to Clary, he became suspicious the suspect was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, state police said.
The corporal, who has not been identified, advised Clary to remain on the scene while he called for backup. A second trooper arrived on the scene and two officers proceeded to do a field sobriety test on the driver, according to state police.
The officers determined they had probable cause to arrest Clary, but instead of cooperating, he began to "violently resist," state police said. The confrontation continued to escalate from there.
State police described the scene as a "knock-down, drag-out fight on the side of the road with cars speeding by them."
Clary allegedly wrestled free from the officers, ran back to this car, grabbed a gun and started firing on the two troopers. They returned fire. One trooper was hit three times and airlifted in critical condition to St. Luke's University Hospital in Bethlehem. He remains stable in the intensive care unit, state police said.
Clary was also hit by gunfire. He drove himself to Easton Hospital and was later transported to Lehigh Valley Hospital's Cedar Crest campus. He also was in surgery Tuesday afternoon and is currently in stable condition.
"The thoughts of every Pennsylvania State Police employee are with our wounded member at this time," said Commissioner Tyree C. Blocker.
After Clary arrived at Easton, police blocked off the entrance to the hospital and diverted patients to other medical centers.
Route 33 was shut down in both directions during the investigation. Traffic on nearby State Route 22 was backed up for miles, according to a NBC10 photographer near the scene.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and Sen. Bob Casey tweeted their support for the trooper.