Officer Hakim A. Farthing, 28 years old, was struck and killed by a drunk driver on August 10, 2002, while assisting at the scene of another accident on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway at 0330 hours. Officers were investigating an earlier fatal accident and Officer Farthing was lighting flares to close the New York Avenue exit ramp from the Parkway in Hyattsville, Maryland just north of the Washington, DC border.
The drunk driver, Jovada P. Welch, drove through cones and flares, striking Officer Farthing. The collision killed him instantly. After striking Officer Farthing, Welch drove an additional 2000 feet before being stopped by officers who witnessed the incident. Crash investigators estimated Welch’s speed to be between 47 and 67 mph. A Maryland State Police helicopter, at the scene, landed and its paramedic began attending to Officer Farthing who was later determined to be deceased.
Officer Farthing, born in Philadelphia, spent some of his childhood in the Washington, DC area, before moving with his family to New Jersey. He graduated from Rutgers University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice. Officer Farthing then enlisted in the United States Army and served in the prestigious Old Guard Ceremonial Unit. He had been a United States Park Police officer for two years and was assigned to the U.S. Park Police Anacostia Station.
In May 2003, Welch was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison.
We honor his service and commitment to duty.