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Suspected Drunk Driver from Kennesaw Faces New Charges

He allegedly hit an Atlanta police officer's patrol car late Friday night.

A suspected drunk driver from Kennesaw who allegedly hit an Atlanta police officer's patrol car faces new charges.

Scott Eugene Welker, 45, was driving a 2011 Hyundai Sonata around 11:25 p.m. Friday when he hit Officer Osbert Beckles' patrol car, Georgia State Patrol spokesman Gordy Wright said.

Beckles was taken to the Intensive Care Unit at Grady Hospital with head and chest injuries and broken bones after authorities extricated him from his vehicle, said Officer John Chafee, spokesman for the Atlanta Police Department.

Welker fled the scene on foot but was captured nearby a short time later, Wright said. He was arrested and taken to the Fulton County Jail, where he was originally held on six charges, including driving under the influence, serious injury by motor vehicle, leaving the scene of an accident, reckless driving, failure to maintain lane, improper turn/improper lane change and seat belt violation.

Now, three new charges have been added.

Welker is charged with driving in an emergency lane, DUI Test refused, and hit-and-run. He remains in the Fulton County Jail in lieu of $58,000 bond.

Beckles, who was working traffic on Interstate 75 at Northside Parkway at the time of the hit-and-run, remains in ICU at Grady, Chafee said Sunday evening.

The department is hopeful that Beckles "will be moved from the ICU into a regular room within the next day or two," he said.

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