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Officer involved in fatal crash has worked for CMPD for 7 years, records show

The off-duty officer had minor injuries from this wreck Saturday in the 500 block of West Sugar Creek Road. A 25-year-old woman was killed.
The off-duty officer had minor injuries from this wreck Saturday in the 500 block of West Sugar Creek Road. A 25-year-old woman was killed. WBTV

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer involved in a fatal northeast Charlotte crash Saturday has worked for the department since 2010, according to records obtained by the Observer.

Officer Warith Muhammad, 40, was off-duty around 12:25 p.m. Saturday when his marked patrol car collided with a 1992 Honda Accord in the 500 block of West Sugar Creek Road near Sofley Road, police said. CMPD originally misspelled his first name as Wraith.

The Honda driver, Lachandra Ciera McCorkle, was killed. She had just turned 25.

Muhammad was driving a marked 2017 Ford Explorer, and he was treated for minor injuries at Carolinas Medical Center, police said. He has been placed on paid administrative leave until the conclusions of a major crash investigation and an internal department investigation, which is standard procedure when an officer is involved in a fatal wreck.

Police said Muhammad crashed into the driver’s side of the Honda after McCorkle entered the intersection of West Sugar Creek Road and Sofley Road.

Speed does not appear to be a factor in the crash, and police are investigating whether impairment was a factor for McCorkle, the department said Saturday.

This is the second fatal crash involving a CMPD officer in as many months.

Officer Phillip Barker, 24, was charged with misdemeanor death by vehicle after he fatally struck a pedestrian in his patrol car on Morehead Street near Euclid Avenue in July. He was traveling at more than 100 mph at the time of the crash, police said.

Barker was hired by CMPD in January 2016 and had recently completed his year-long probationary period as a new officer, police said. “Sometimes with youth, you don’t have the experience,” CMPD Chief Kerr Putney said while discussing Barker’s case in July.

Jane Wester: 704-358-5128, @janewester

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