Peru police investigating after driver crashes into ambulance

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PERU, Ind. -- A man is facing charges after police said he drove into the back of an ambulance and tried to keep going.

Investigators said Saturday, two EMT's were on their way to a medical call with the ambulance's lights and sirens on when a driver rear ended them. Court documents show he told police he saw lights and "gunned it."

"The ambulance stopped however the gentleman continued to push the ambulance another, we're not exactly sure how long but there was debris in the roadway for 400 feet," Peru Police Chief Michael Meeks said.

According to court documents, an EMT told police the driver then approached them aggressively and yelled "we needed to repent because the devil was here." Police arrested Ryan Wilke for OWI and criminal recklessness.

Investigators said they're determining whether narcotics or mental illness played any role.

"Violence from patients and or even public in some areas where we work is kind of part of the job," Nathaniel Metz said.

Metz is the president of the Indiana EMS Association. He said ambulance accidents are frequent in the industry.

"The NHTSA did a report in 2015 a 20-year analysis that showed that there are about 1,500 ambulance accidents a year that result in injury," Metz said.

In this case, everyone is okay. But concerns remain.

"Concern not only for law enforcement and for our EMS but the fact that there are folks out here in our community and we just don't know what they're going through," Chief Meeks said.

A judge set Wilke's bond at $600.





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