Jonesboro officer hit by car recounts accident

UNCUT: (GRAPHIC CONTENT) Dash cam video from Officer Gates' cruiser

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Monday night, Jonesboro Police Officer Weston Gates responded to a call of a car that had gone off in the ditch at Caraway Road and Glenn Place.

That night, it was dark and raining, but that soon became the least of his worries.

As he was walking across Caraway Road, Officer Gates was hit by an oncoming car.

The incident was all caught on his police cruiser's dash cam.

While the video is graphic, and Officer Gates is banged up, he is okay.

His good health and spirits is something he attributes completely to God.

Officer Gates has been at St. Bernards Medical Center in Jonesboro since Monday night.

Though he's suffering from a number of bumps and bruises, and is sporting quite a few stitches, things could be a lot worse.

Gates explained to Region 8 News that it started when he was dispatched to Caraway Road to assist a car that had gone into the ditch.

With no good place to park, Gates said he pulled his cruiser into the parking lot of a car wash across the street.

"I started walking towards there and as I'm walking up, I look left and I can see some traffic coming. I look right and I can see some traffic coming southbound," Gates said. "I looked back left as I stepped towards and it looked to me like a vehicle was slowing down."

Thinking the vehicle headed his way was stopping, Officer Gates proceeded to step into the road, turning his attention to the next lane of traffic.

"I saw a vehicle that hadn't slowed I put my hand up," Officer Gates said.

A split second later, he looked back to realize the car headed his way was not stopping.

"I don't know if I heard something...maybe I was just checking behind me again," Officer Gates said. "That's when I saw the vehicle and that they hadn't seen me and that's when the accident happened."

Officers working the scene later determined that Gates was thrown nearly 75 feet.

Officer Gates said the vehicle was going roughly 35 to 40 mph.

While there are some things he doesn't remember, the moments before and after impact remain vivid.

"I hit and I remember my whole body lunging forward," Officer Gates said.

The next thing he remembers is being face down on the concrete, unable to breathe or feel his legs.

"I thought my neck was broke. You think all these terrible things. You can't really hardly breathe, you can't walk, you feel kind of defenseless on the ground," Officer Gates said.

So to come away from the accident with just a few bumps, bruises and stitches, is something Officer Gates said is amazing.

"It's absolutely. There's no way to explain it," Officer Gates said. "There's no way to explain it. It's one of those God things. He had His hand over me. He had His hand over everyone there. It's absolutely touched my life."

Right before our interview, Officer Gates learned he won't even have to have reconstructive surgery on his knee as previously thought.

He wanted us to pass along his most sincere thank you's to everyone who helped him after the accident, those who held umbrellas over him and kept him conscious until help arrived.

Officer Gates also called the driver of the SUV while in the hospital, letting him know that he has no hard feelings about the incident.

Officer Gates said it was simply a perfect storm of events that led to a very unfortunate accident.

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