Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Holly Burke had been a police community support officer with West Midlands Police for 14 months

An off-duty PCSO was killed when her car was hit by a suspected drug-driver being chased by police.

Holly Burke, 28, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash on Tuesday night.

Officers had deployed a stinger in a bid to stop the fleeing motorist, but the Renault carried on and collided “at speed” with Ms Burke’s car.

West Midlands Police Ch Supt Kenny Bell said it was “a desperately sad time for everyone who knew Holly”.

A 42-year-old man arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving remains in police custody.

Police said he was also arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs.

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Media captionSpeeding car captured before fatal PCSO crash

‘Taken too soon’

Ms Burke had been a police community support officer (PCSO) with the force for 14 months.

Officers attempted CPR at the scene of the crash, which happened after a 15-minute pursuit through Birmingham, but she was pronounced dead at the scene.

Ch Supt Bell said the “tragic event” would “have an impact on those officers who responded and those who worked alongside her”.

“Holly has been taken from us too soon and as a police family we are feeling this.”

Image caption The pursuit began in the Erdington area of the city

The pursuit began in the Erdington area of the city when officers on a routine patrol spotted the speeding people carrier at about 23:30 GMT.

When it failed to stop, the officers gave chase.

The car crashed at the junction of Bearwood Road and the Hagley Road, West Midlands Police said.

West Midlands Ambulance service said police were already performing CPR on a woman when paramedics arrived.

“Ambulance staff quickly took over resuscitation efforts but sadly nothing could be done to save the woman and she was confirmed dead a short time later,” it said.

“The driver of the second car, a man, sustained minor injuries and was taken to hospital for further checks.”

The force has referred itself to the police watchdog.

Image caption A nearby shopkeeper he saw a car against a barrier behind a traffic light following the crash

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said it had sent investigators to the scene to gather evidence, including footage from body cameras and dash cams.

Regional director, Derrick Campbell, said investigators would work “to determine if appropriate policies and procedures were followed”.

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