Photo: Contributed Photo / Connecticut State Police
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It’s been 10 years since a Connecticut State Police trooper was killed in the line of duty during a routine traffic stop.
The incident happened around 4 p.m. on Sept. 2, 2010, when Trooper First Class Kenneth Hall was sitting in his cruiser, parked on the shoulder of Interstate 91 north in Enfield.
Hall was making a routine traffic stop as part of a statewide commercial vehicle safety initiative.
As this was underway, a pickup truck — headed north in the left lane of I-91 at a “very high rate of speed,” according to state police — veered across three lanes of traffic and hit Hall’s cruiser.
Hall, who sustained multiple injuries, was rushed to Bay State Medical Center in Springfield, Mass., where he was pronounced dead. He was 57.
“Never forgotten,” state police said in a social media post remembering Hall on Wednesday.
Hall was a 22-year veteran trooper and former U.S. Marine. He served in Vietnam.
Enfield resident Michael Pajak, 32 at the time of the incident, was later identified as the driver of the vehicle that hit Hall’s cruiser.
Authorities said a urine sample for Pajak tested positive for cocaine and other drugs, but did not show up in a blood test — indicating that Pajak used drugs in the days leading up to the crash but not the day of the incident.
Prior to the deadly crash, Pajak had been in and out of the state’s criminal justice system for more than a decade on various offenses, including drug and burglary convictions and a DUI conviction.
In September 2011, Pajak was sentenced to serve 11 years in prison in connection with the deadly crash.
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