7 people injured after suspected drunk driver crashes into accident scene

7 people injured after suspected drunk driver crashes into accident scene
Source: DOTD
Source: DOTD

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Seven people, including a Baton Rouge Police Officer and two medics, were injured early Sunday morning after a they were hit by a suspected drunk driver while tending to a crash.

Police and Acadian ambulance were called out to the initial one-vehicle crash involving a 2003 Mazda 6 around 1:15 a.m. near the I-10, I-12 split near Essen Lane.

According to a spokesperson with BRPD, while tending to the crash along with three bystanders, a 2014 Chevrolet Silverado bypassed all of the emergency vehicles and crashed into the Mazda 6 causing the vehicle to hit a BRPD officer, one EMT, and two of the bystanders.

Police say as the driver of the Silverado, later identified as 26-year-old William Smith, attempted to flee the scene, he hit another EMT and another bystander before being stopped by another BRPD officer on I-12.

The BRPD officer, both EMTs, both bystanders, and Smith were transported to local hospitals with severe injuries. All are expected to survive.

"It's a tragic thing that happened," said Cpl. L'Jean McKneely of BRPD. "Disregarded all signs, all lights, sirens that we had in place in the staging area, went around a police car and struck the car that was wrecked, and then struck all those other individuals."
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[endif] Police say Smith refused a breathalyzer test, so a warrant was drawn for a toxicology test. They believe he was under the influence of either drugs or alcohol. "We're gonna find out what happened, why did he do this, and now he's being placed in Parish Prison, he's behind bars, and he will face his day in court," McKneely said.

Smith faces six criminal counts, including hit and run and driving with a suspended license. Police could add a DWI charge, depending on the result of the toxicology test.

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