A Brantford police officer has been arrested on impaired driving charges and a Dundas man is in hospital with life threatening injuries after falling out of a jeep in the city’s west end early Monday.

The officer was off duty at the time of the incident. Brantford police said Monday he has been suspended with pay and the service is looking at possible Police Act charges as well.

Police and ambulance crews were called to Emerson Avenue near McMaster University around 1:30 a.m., and found a 27-year-old Dundas man with serious head injuries lying in the roadway.

He and the driver – a 33-year-old Dundas resident  – had been driving in a white Jeep with the doors taken off. “It does not look like he was wearing a seatbelt,” said police Const. Claus Wagner. No collision had taken place, he added.

After the passenger fell out, the driver of the jeep circled back to where the passenger was lying and waited for police to arrive, Wagner says. Crews arrived and rushed the man to hospital.

The driver was arrested on charges of impaired operation causing bodily harm and impaired operation over 80 mgs. He was held for a bail hearing.

In a written statement, Brantford police said they can't share specific details of the incident as criminal charges have been laid and Hamilton police are investigating. On top of the criminal charges, Acting Police Chief Dave Wiedrick has launched an internal investigation to determine if the officer should face discipline charges under the Police Services Act.

The officer has been suspended with pay pending the investigation.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the injured male and his family at this time,” Wiedrick said.

Several roads in the area were closed for the investigation, but have since reopened.

The police collision reconstruction unit is investigating and asks anyone with information to call 905-546-4755.