The Bucks County police officer who was jolted by power lines during a drug bust Tuesday is recovering - and not for the first time.
Tuesday's incident at the Doylestown SEPTA station, which happened when the officer climbed atop a train to retrieve an alleged bag of drugs, turned out to be the second injury in the line of duty for Morrisville Borough Police Cpl. Michael Pitcher.
On Valentine's Day 2015, Pitcher was struck and almost run over by a Levittown man fleeing a 7-Eleven parking lot in a stolen car.
Pitcher shot the driver, Matthew Shipe, once in the chest. Shipe was able to drive away before crashing in a wooded area.
In September, Shipe, now 27, pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated assault, theft and fleeing an officer and was sentenced to 5 1/2 to 13 years in state prison. At his sentencing hearing, he blamed his actions on a heroin addiction, the Doylestown Intelligencer reported.
Pitcher's injuries that day were less severe than the second- and third-degree burns he sustained on his arms and back Tuesday.
Pitcher was part of a Bucks County drug task force that had set up a sting for two men allegedly peddling heroin from Philadelphia to Doylestown. He was undercover and standing on the train platform when Dominique McLean Rivers, 26, of Philadelphia, apparently caught wind of his impending arrest and fled.
Officers including Pitcher chased Rivers down, and after they had him in custody, Pitcher returned to the station to retrieve a bag Rivers had thrown on top of the train.
He climbed a ladder between two trains and was "shocked by electric current emanating from an insulator" on the train roof, which connects to the overhead power wires, according to an affidavit of probable cause.
The overhead power wires carry 11,500 volts of electricity.
Pitcher, a nine-year veteran, was rushed to Temple University Hospital's Burn Center and released Wednesday.
The affidavit says 6 1/2 bundles of alleged heroin were found in the bag.
Scott Sauer, SEPTA's assistant general manager for system safety, said the agency regularly holds "training simulations with our law enforcement partners and other first-responders throughout the region to help familiarize them with the system, and to reinforce safe-practice measures."
Rivers, known as "Reem," was charged with possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, conspiracy and related offenses.
According to the affidavit, he and another Philadelphia man, Jamar Tyreek Anderson, 27, known as "Proph," have been selling heroin in Doylestown for months.
Authorities are also seeking to arrest Anderson.
Both Rivers and Anderson have past convictions in Philadelphia on drug offenses. Rivers also pleaded guilty to an escape charge in Philadelphia.