Seattle police officer killed in crash with stolen car

Seattle police officer killed in crash with stolen car
SEATTLE - A recently hired police officer on her way to work and a man driving a stolen Honda Civic died Monday morning when the stolen car broadsided the officer's BMW, police said.

Elizabeth Mary Nowak, 30, the second rookie in Seattle to die in a traffic accident in three months, spent five years at another law enforcement agency, was hired by the city a few months ago and had been working for about a week in the East Precinct, Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske said.

The collision occurred when the Civic, which was reported stolen Sunday night, ran a red light with its lights off about five blocks southeast of the Magnolia Bridge, Officer Sean P. Whitcomb said. Kerlikowske said the stolen car was speeding but did not give a speed estimate.

Both drivers died at the scene and a woman riding in the stolen car was taken to Harborview Medical Center.

"The officers in the East precinct have been told," Kerlikowske said. "She had some friends here and we have some of our officers who are trained in critical incident management with her friends right now."

Nowak previously worked as an officer in the Racine Police Department in Wisconsin.

On Aug. 13, Officer Joselito "Lito" Barber, 26, who had been on the job two months, was killed when his cruiser was broadsided by a GMC Yukon that, according to investigators, ran a red light at about 80 mph.

The driver of the sport utility vehicle, Mary Jane Rivas, 31, has been charged with vehicular homicide and cocaine possession.