Millville police officer Christopher Reeves died early yesterday morning, after another vehicle slammed into his police cruiser.

The collision took place just after 2 a.m. Sunday, June 8 at the intersection of 3rd and Broad Streets in Millville, according to the Cumberland County Prosecutors Office.

Reeves was on patrol with a rookie Officer Jonathan Seidel in the passenger seat when a black SUV being chased by police collided with their cruiser, killing Reeves on impact.  Seidel is currently awaiting arm surgery for an injury he sustained from the crash, but has been upgraded to stable condition at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, New Jersey.

A witness at the scene named Rebecca, who chose to be identified by only her first name, told 6abc.com:

"All of a sudden I heard a boom like lightning," said Rebecca. "I just knew somebody died."

Other witnesses say following the crash several Millville police officers reached through the window of the SUV being driven by the suspect, pulled him to the ground, and began beating him.

New details are surfacing today about the man responsible for the accident.  PressofAtlanticCity.com reports that Timothy Seidel (no relation to Officer Jonathan Seidel) had himself applied to become a cop with the Millville Police Department.

Christopher Reeves, 1991 graduate of Millville Senior High School and a former Marine, is survived by a 2-year old son, and his wife Susan (a fellow Millville police officer).

Family and community members are grieving as they struggle to come to grips with the tragedy.  Millville Mayor Tim Shannon tells Press Of Atlantic City:

“Obviously, it’s a very, very difficult time for the entire city of Millville. Anytime you lose an officer in the line of duty, it is tragic.”

For video from the scene courtesy of 6abc.com click here >> http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/story?section=news/local&id=8728728