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Off-duty State Police trooper facing DUI in Route 1 crash


REVERE, Mass. ( -- An off-duty Massachusetts State Police trooper is accused of driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol in a crash involving another on-duty trooper in Revere.

Shawn D'Amato, 43, was arraigned Monday at Mass. General Hospital on charges of operating under the influence of alcohol, operating under the influence of drugs, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, and obstructing an emergency vehicle.

Officials say Trooper John Phonesavanh was sitting inside of his cruiser writing a citation just before 12:45 a.m. when he was hit from behind, sending his cruiser into the back of a car he had stopped on Route 16 in Revere.

D'Amato, a member of the State Police since May 1994, drove his Toyota Corolla into the back of the cruiser,  striking it with such force that his car spun around and stopped, facing northbound against traffic, according to a release from the Suffolk County District Attorney's office.

According to troopers who responded to the accident, D'Amato told them his name was Charlie, and said his last name was an expletive. Troopers said D'Amato's breath allegedly smelled of alcohol and his speech was slurred.

According to the District Attorney's office, D'Amato allegedly told emergency medical technicians that he had smoked crack cocaine within the past hour, and EMTs noticed apparent track marks on his arms, suggesting intravenous drug use.

D'Amato was treated for non-life threatening injuries at Mass. General Hospital after the crash. The on-duty trooper and the driver of the car he pulled over, an unidentified 29-year-old Chelsea man, were also transported to Mass. General with non-life threatening injuries. They have since been released.

Mass. State Police Colonel Timothy Alben said, "The mixing of alcohol and/or controlled substances with the operation of a motor vehicle is not just irresponsible, it is a reckless and deliberate culmination of bad decision making that has contributed to unspeakable loss of lives, life altering injuries and incomprehensible damage to people and families. The men and women of the Massachusetts State Police - every one of us - have witnessed such tragedies up close and as personal as it can be experienced. We know the consequences!"

Alben said he expects D'Amato will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

"We respect the judicial process as it applies to everyone, but will aggressively pursue justice in this and every such case."

A judge released D'Amato on his own recognizance with a no-driving order, and his next court date was set for January 10.