Lake Charles – A woman from Iowa, Louisiana, died Sunday evening as the result of a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 10 in Calcasieu Parish.
On March 3, 2019, shortly after 7:00 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop D responded to a two-vehicle crash on I-10 about 1 mile west of LA Hwy 397 in Calcasieu Parish. The preliminary investigation revealed a 2011 Nissan Altima driven by 27-year-old Sherice Denne Randell of Vinton was traveling east on I-10 at a high rate of speed. For unknown reasons, Randell changed lanes causing the rear of the vehicle she was driving to make contact with the front of a 2011 Chevrolet pickup truck driven by 53-year-old Randy D. Weeks of Iowa. The contact caused both drivers to lose control and both vehicles to run off the right side of the roadway. The pickup truck struck a tree before both vehicles came to a rest in a ditch.
Weeks and the other occupants in the pickup truck were properly restrained. The front seat passenger in the pickup truck, 51-year-old Elizabeth Kent of Iowa, was seriously injured and transported to Lake Charles Memorial Hospital where she later died. Randell was not injured.
Excessive speed on the part of Randell is suspected to be a factor in the crash. Randell was charged with negligent injuring (4 counts), reckless operation of a motor vehicle, following too close, improper lane use, and no seat belt. Additional charges are possible.
Toxicology samples were obtained from both drivers and will be submitted for analysis. The crash remains under investigation.
Louisiana State Police remind drivers that speeding reduces the driver’s ability to steer safely around vehicles or objects on the roadway, extends the distance necessary to stop a vehicle, and increases the distance a vehicle travels while the driver reacts to a situation. Speeding and other aggressive driving behaviors are among the leading causes of highway crashes and fatalities.
Troop D has investigated 3 fatal crashes resulting in 3 deaths in 2019.