A DeKalb County police officer died in a traffic accident Saturday while trying to find a motorist who fled a traffic stop.
Officer Ivorie Klusmann was responding to a call when his patrol car ran off the road and hit a tree at 2:45 a.m. Saturday, said Police Chief Cedric Alexander. Klusmann died at the scene. The 31-year-old officer had been with the DeKalb County Police Department since October and graduated from the police academy in April.
"This is very hurtful and very difficult for us as a police department and a community," Alexander told a news conference.
Klusmann crashed near the intersection of DeKalb Medical Parkway and Heritage Park Trail.
The officer had pulled over a driver during a traffic stop, Alexander said. The officer took the driver's information and returned to his patrol car. When the motorist fled, Klusmann pursued him for a short distance until a supervisor called off the chase.
Then another officer spotted the vehicle. Klusmann was headed in that direction when he crashed. The driver escaped.
"We're going to pursue this right to the end. We won't stop," Alexander said.
Flags at police headquarters were lowered to half-staff in memory of the father of two children, the chief said.