Michigan State Police trooper dies after being struck on I-75

A Michigan State Police trooper was fatally struck while conducting a traffic stop Wednesday near Birch Run, according to the agency.

Joel Popp, 39, and other troopers were investigating a suspected impaired driver who was stopped on northbound Interstate 75 in a curved lane of travel at 7:12 p.m. Wednesday.

A 81-year-old male driver struck two patrol cars and Popp, who was outside his patrol vehicle. Popp was taken to Hurley Medical Center in Flint, where he died.

The other driver had serious injuries, but is expected to survive.

Popp served at the Tri-City post. He enlisted with MSP in January 2020 after graduating as a member of the 137th Trooper Recruit School.

He is survived by his wife Stefanie and a young daughter.

“This is a message none of us wishes to deliver,” Col. James F. Grady II, director of the MSP, said in a news release. “With a very heavy heart I confirm the death of one of our own, Tpr. Joel Popp. I ask that you please keep his family, fellow troopers and all whose lives he has touched in your thoughts.”

Popp is the 56th MSP trooper to be killed in the line of duty, according to MSP.

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