Ontario man charged after allegedly sideswiping Homer trooper's vehicle

Sandip Nijjar (New York State Police)

MARATHON, N.Y. - A Canadian truck driver was arrested last week after allegedly driving drunk and hitting a state trooper's car on Interstate 81 through Cortland County.

On Nov. 3, police arrested 39-year-old Sandip Nijjar, of Brampton, Ontario, and charged him with driving while intoxicated in a commercial vehicle, a misdemeanor, and other traffic violations, including leaving the scene of a property damage accident and failure to move over for an emergency vehicle.

The incident occurred at about 11:30 p.m. Friday while a trooper from Homer was assisting a disabled vehicle on the eastern shoulder of Interstate 81 northbound in Marathon, police said.

While the trooper was retrieving a car jack from the trunk of his vehicle, Nijjar sideswiped his patrol car and narrowly missed striking the trooper, state police said. Nijjar continued driving northbound, leaving the scene of the accident.

A description of the driver was given by thew trooper whose vehicle had been struck. With the assistance of other troopers and Cortland County Sheriff's deputies, Nijjar was located and stopped on I-81 northbound in Homer.

An investigation determined that Nijjar was driving while intoxicated, police said. He refused to submit to a breathalyzer test.

Nijjar was arraigned in Cincinnatus Town Court and taken to Cortland County Jail on $2,500 cash bail or $5,000 property bond.