Alaska News

Anchorage officer hurt in crash returns home from hospital

An Anchorage police officer injured in a high-speed collision late last month returned home Thursday, following treatment in Seattle for a fractured pelvis, police said.

Two firefighter-paramedics who worked to rescue Officer Jennifer Pierce, 25, from her mangled patrol car July 31 met Pierce's arriving flight and pulled her gurney through Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport as Pierce sat smiling.

"I'm really excited to get back home to see my family and get back to work as soon as possible," she told reporters.

But first, Pierce said, she'll have to practice walking again.

Pierce was driving west on the Glenn Highway about 3:15 a.m. on July 31 when a gold, 2007 BMW heading the other direction crossed a median near the McCarrey Street overpass, police said at the time.

The oncoming BMW sideswiped Pierce's car, police said. The wounded officer was trapped in the badly damaged car until firefighters freed her, police said.

Police named the other driver as 21-year-old Jariss Black. Black suffered only minor injuries, police said.


Traffic investigator Rick Steiding said Thursday that no charges have yet been filed, nor any citations issued. The investigation continues, police said.

Alcohol is not believed to be involved, but police are awaiting the results of a toxicology test -- usually a six- to 10-week wait -- before forwarding the case to the Anchorage District Attorney's Office, Steiding said. Prosecutors will make a decision on what charges, if any, to file, he said.

Steiding declined to comment on how fast the cars were traveling, citing the ongoing inquiry. "We do know it was a high-speed wreck," he said.

About a dozen fellow officers, including Chief Mark Mew, greeted Pierce at her airport homecoming. Her supervisor, Lt. Myron Fanning, was there too.

Fanning had been off the night of the wreck but drove to the scene after getting a call that one of his officers was hurt, he said.

"They told me they were still trying to extract her when I got there," Fanning said. "It was a terrifying scene."

Reach Casey Grove at or 257-4589.


Casey Grove

Casey Grove is a former reporter for the Anchorage Daily News. He left the ADN in 2014.