Two Pennsylvania state troopers were killed when a car mowed them down during a traffic stop in Philadelphia early Monday, authorities said.
Troopers Martin F. Mack III, 33, and Branden T. Sisca, 29, were killed along with a man they were trying to take into custody at about 12:45 a.m. in the southbound lanes of I-95 near the Broad Street exit, state police said in a statement.
A female motorist traveling at a “high rate of speed” who was trying to drive past the three men on the highway’s shoulder then struck all three, state police Capt. James Kemm said at a press conference carried live by CBS Philadelphia.
“The impact was so great that it threw the troopers over into the northbound lanes of Interstate 95,” Kemm said. “The vehicle then struck the Jersey barrier, continued a short distance along Interstate 95 and ended up on the right-side shoulder.”
The troopers and the civilian — who was not immediately identified pending family notification — were pronounced dead at the scene, Kemm said.
Mack joined the agency in 2014, while Sisca had worked as a trooper since February 2021. Both spent their entire careers assigned to patrol duties in and around Philadelphia, state police said.
Gov. Tom Wolf ordered all flags throughout Pennsylvania to be flown at half-staff until sunset Friday in honor of Mack and Sisca.
“This is a heartbreaking tragedy that occurred while these troopers were protecting and serving,” Wolf said. “This mournful incident is a stark reminder of the risks — and sacrifices — our law enforcement officers undertake every day to keep us safe. My heart goes out to their families and the communities they lived in and served.”
A DUI-related investigation in the triple fatality is ongoing, Kemm said. The woman who struck the troopers and the man stayed at the crash scene, state police said.
Moments before the deadly wreck, Mack and Sisca had pulled over the woman who struck them, law enforcement sources told NBC Philadelphia. She had been stopped for suspicion of DUI, but the troopers left her vehicle after getting a call about a man walking on the highway, sources told the station.
A second damaged vehicle, a silver Chevy, was also seen nearby. No charges had been filed as of Monday afternoon, according to WPVI.
I-95 has since reopened after being shut down for several hours in both directions.