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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Detective’s patrol car struck on freeway

Burbridge injured second time two years

A Spokane police major crimes detective was injured in a freeway crash Thursday when a suspected drunken driver struck his patrol car.

Mark Burbridge was driving west in the right lane of Interstate 90 just east of the Lincoln Street exit when a 1995 Honda Civic driven by Charity B. Valdivia, 38, crossed over from the left lane and struck his unmarked 2008 Crown Victoria, according to the Washington State Patrol.

Burbridge’s car spun out of control and smashed into the center concrete barrier while Valdivia’s Honda struck a semitruck and lodged under its left bumper, said WSP Trooper Troy Briggs.

Valdivia, of Coeur d’Alene, was treated for minor injuries before she was arrested on suspicion of vehicular assault, according to the WSP.

Burbridge, 49, was treated at a hospital; Briggs said the extent of his injuries was not known but that he had been released.

The semi driver, Brandon P. Yahne, 22, of Lacey, Wash., was not injured, nor was his vehicle damaged. The 6:50 a.m. crash reduced traffic to one lane and snarled the morning commute. All lanes reopened by 9:45 a.m.

In July 2010, Burbridge strained his back in a crash at Division Street and Sharp Avenue when a driver ran a red light and broadsided his unmarked patrol car. Detectives Jan Pogachar and Douglas Orr also were injured. The driver, Tonia S. Vansant, had traces of cocaine in her system. She was sentenced in December 2010 to 33 months in prison for vehicular assault.

Investigators suspect Valdivia had been drinking when she struck Burbridge’s car Thursday, Briggs said.

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