Prosecutors: “Upton Intentionally Struck and Killed Trooper Skinner”
Prosecutors say a Florida man, who has been indicted on a 1st degree murder charge, told them he intentionally swerved his vehicle into New York State Trooper Christopher Skinner yesterday.
Trooper Skinner had been conducting a routine traffic stop on Interstate 81 between Upper Front Street in Hinmans Corners and Castle Creek when he was struck and killed instantly.
Although prosecutors say the suspect, 60-year-old Almond Upton of Melrose, Florida told them he intentionally ran into Trooper Skinner, but while being led to the Town of Chenango Court, Upton told reporters that he didn’t know what happened.
Authorities say Upton is also accused of intentionally hitting two northbound cars on the interstate, causing minor injuries to one driver.
After driving about a mile just north of exit 6, Upton reportedly saw Trooper Skinner conducting a traffic stop and drove from the passing lane into the driving lane and intentionally hit the 13 year veteran of the State Police.
After Upton’s vehicle traveled a short distance off the road, he ran into the woods where police K9 and helicopter located him and he was taken into custody about an hour after the Trooper was killed. Upton has been placed in the Broome County Jail with no bail.
Police said it did not appear Upton was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The investigation is continuing and anyone with information about Upton’s actions prior to the incident is asked to contact the New York State Police.