Retired RPD officer with multiple sclerosis without wheelchair, van following hit-and-run crash

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- A retired Raleigh Police officer with multiple sclerosis has been without his wheelchair and a wheelchair-accessible van following a hit-and-run crash late Friday afternoon.

AJ Luedtke served with the Raleigh Police Department from 2003-2013 before being forced into medical retirement due to his Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis. Coincidentally, part of his duties as an officer included working crash investigations.

The crash happened Friday around 4:30-5:00 p.m. at the intersection of Highway 50 and Mount Vernon Church Road. According to AJ's wife Teresa, an RV refused to yield to a green light while turning left and proceeded to collide with their van.

"I said 'is everyone okay?' and AJ said 'yes, I'm fine,' and my brother said 'no, please call an ambulance,'" said Teresa Luedtke.

Her brother, Jimmy Hall, stayed overnight at the Duke Trauma Center, before being released from the hospital Saturday. Hall is a pastor at Bible Baptist Church in Creedmoor, near the Luedtke's home.

AJ suffered a minor cut to his face, while Teresa suffered scrapes, that required stitches, to her arms. While the Luedtke's are happy the injuries weren't more serious, AJ is relegated to his bed as his wheelchair and van sit in a tow yard.
"At the gym, he's working towards his mobility, again working with a personal trainer. The longer he has to lay in the bed, it's more of a setback," said Teresa Luedtke.

ABC11 first met the Luedtke's back in 2017, when AJ was surprised with the motorized wheelchair and wheelchair-accessible van, thanks to Clay Pot Ministries and support from the community.

On Tuesday morning, a person reached out to the family to tell them they saw the driver of the RV get out, look at the scene, and then get back in the vehicle.

"Words cannot explain the anger I have," AJ Luedtke said.

But good news soon came for the family.

Thanks to Stalls Medical in Cary and Raleigh, and Prospect United Methodist Church in Virginia, AJ Luedtke now has a loaner vehicle and wheelchair, while he waits to learn if his original equipment can be replaced.
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