An Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper who was hit by a vehicle in late February continues to improve, hospital and state officials said.
Trooper Brent E. Hill, 26, is listed in fair condition at Miami Valley Hospital and could be released as early as next week, according to Lt. Matt Hamilton of the Lebanon post.
“He continues to progress,” Hamilton said. “Hopefully he’ll be released soon to go home and recover. He still has a lot of rehab and physical and speech therapy he’ll need to do. We’re still taking it day by day with his cognitive recovery.”
Hill suffered head trauma and extensive injuries to his leg when he was hit by a car driven by Andrew T. Combs, 22, of Vandalia, while investigating another crash on northbound Interstate 75 near milepost 36 the night of Feb. 27.
Hamilton said the investigation is ongoing, and it could be concluded in the next couple of weeks. No charges have been filed against Combs, he said.
“We’re still looking at all of the evidence,” Hamilton said. “It’s a process that takes times.”
Hill graduated from the 153rd OSHP academy class on Feb. 8 and started at the Lebanon post on Feb. 11, where he was paired with his training officer, Trooper Mike Steele, 48. Hill is a 2005 graduate of Franklin High School.
Hill and Steele responded to a one-vehicle crash on northbound I-75 between Ohio 122 and Ohio 123 just after 11 p.m. Feb. 27. Victoria L. Zaagman, 20, of West Chester Twp. lost control of her 2001 Dodge Neon. Her vehicle went off the left side of the roadway and struck the concrete median wall.
Hill was out of the police cruiser investigating when a 1996 Buick Riviera driven by Combs slid on the snowy roadway. The Riviera went off the left side of the roadway, sideswiped the trooper’s patrol car, and struck Hill and Zaagman’s Neon.
No other injuries were reported. Zaagman was arrested for failure to maintain reasonable control and for operating a vehicle after underage consumption.
Hill initially was transported to Atrium Medical Center in Middletown, then transferred to Miami Valley’s Trauma Center, where he originally was listed in critical condition and underwent leg surgery.