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ALBANY, Ga. (AP) — An Albany police officer was killed Friday when her cruiser crashed into a tree and burned during a pursuit of two robbery suspects, officials said.
Officer Terry Fleming, 36, died in the wreck, Police Chief John Proctor told The Albany Herald (http://bit.ly/tA3XqE ). She leaves behind a husband of six months and three children. Another officer, Gregory Batson, was injured.
Police arrested two men, Kentrell Bernard Butler and Wesley Martavi Wilkerson, both 22, after the chase and charged them with felony murder, armed robbery, aggravated assault and firearms offenses. Both men were ordered held without bond at an arraignment hearing Saturday, said Uwanna Wooden, a detention officer for the Dougherty County Sheriff's Office. It was not clear whether they had defense attorneys.
Authorities said the chase started when police officers received a report that armed men were robbing the Consolidated Finance Co.
As police cruisers chased the suspects in a Chevrolet Tahoe, Fleming and Batson's cars collided. Fleming's cruiser careened into a tree and burst into flames.
As the chase continued, the driver of the Tahoe rammed other patrol cars, lost control, hit a tree and flipped over, according to a police report. Officers reported finding a gun and cash after arresting the suspects.
The Georgia State Patrol is investigating the wreck that killed Fleming.
"She was doing what she loved best — serving her community," Proctor said. "We lost a fine person and one of our finest officers doing the job she wished to do."
Information from: The Albany Herald, http://albanyherald.com