Lehigh Valley

Pa. state trooper 'fighting for his life' after shootout along highway

News conference scheduled for 10am

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - A news conference is scheduled for 10 a.m. to reveal more information in the shooting that wounded a state trooper in Northampton County Tuesday. Watch it live on 69 News, WFMZ.com or Facebook.com/69WFMZ.

Officials said what should have been a simple traffic stop turned into a violent fight and shootout in Plainfield Township, Northampton County.

Police say a Pennsylvania state trooper pulled over a man for speeding Tuesday around 10 a.m. on Route 33 southbound near Route 191.

After issuing the man a ticket, police said he was free to go.

Instead, they say the man, identified as Daniel Clary, 22, got out of the car to ask how to pay for the ticket. That's when the trooper noticed Clary seemed under the influence and called for backup.

"They had the subject get out of his car and they started doing a field sobriety test on the subject," said Capt. Rich D'Ambrosio, commander of the Troop M barracks in Bethlehem.

But when the trooper began the arrest, Clary freed himself and began violently fighting the troopers.

"It was a knockout, drag-out fight along the side of the road with vehicles speeding by, and he got very, very violent. I saw the confrontation on video already and it was a very violent fight," D'Ambrosio said.

Officials said Clary then ran back to his car, grabbed a gun, and shot at the troopers, hitting one three times.

The troopers were able to return fire, but Clary, who was shot, got in his car and sped off. Officials said he drove himself to Easton Hospital and was taken into police custody. A car with its back windows shot out was seen outside the emergency room there.

Clary was taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital - Cedar Crest and underwent surgery.

Meanwhile, emergency responders transported the state police corporal to St. Luke's University Hospital in Fountain Hill where he underwent surgery.

As of Tuesday afternoon he was in extremely critical but stable condition.

"I cannot thank the staff at St. Luke's enough, and the EMTs, the officers, the life flight crew, and the doctors at St. Luke's because without them this press conference would be, I'm almost certain, the death of a trooper. Right now our guy is up there fighting for his life," D'Ambrosio said during a Tuesday afternoon press conference.

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