8 killed in overnight crashes caused by suspected drunk drivers, LSP says
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Eight people died overnight in three South Central Louisiana vehicle crashes caused by suspected drunk drivers, the Louisiana State Police said.
The unrelated crashes occurred Friday night near Houma in Terrebonne Parish and early Saturday morning near the community of Chackbay in Lafourche Parish and near Roseland in Tangipahoa Parish, authorities said.
The wreck near Houma claimed four victims Friday shortly after 8 p.m. on Louisiana Highway 182 near Highway 660.
According to state police, 42-year-old Charles Triggs Jr. of Raceland was suspected of driving recklessly and impaired when he was traveling eastbound on Hwy. 182 in a 2014 Honda Accord. Police said he attempted to pass another vehicle at a “high rate of speed in a no-passing zone” when he crossed the center-line and crashed head-on into a 2018 Honda Accord driven by 25-year-old Ariana Lachico of Houma.
Lachico died at the scene, as did one of Triggs’ passengers, 21-year-old Danon Fulwiley of Raceland.
Another of Triggs’ passengers -- 23-year-old Corey Porter of Raceland -- and Triggs were rushed for treatment of severe injuries, but both died at a hospital. Police said Fulwiley and Porter were not wearing seatbelts.
The Lafourche Parish crash was reported shortly after midnight early Saturday morning and claimed three lives on LA Hwy. 20 near Chackbay.
State Police said 39-year-old Joey Clement of Thibodaux displayed signs of impairment and was arrested for driving while intoxicated (fourth offense) after his 2019 Ford F-150 pickup truck crossed the center line and struck an oncoming SUV head-on, killing that vehicle’s three occupants.
The crash caused both vehicles to become engulfed in flames. The SUV’s three occupants -- whose identities and ages have not been disclosed -- were killed at the scene. Clement was said to have sustained only minor injuries despite not wearing a seat belt, police said.
And shortly after 6:30 a.m., a single-vehicle crash on state highway 10 near Hwy 1054 near Roseland took the life of 38-year-old Frederick Varnado of Kentwood.
State police said impairment was suspected in the fatal crash in which Varnado’s 2000 Toyota 4Runner veered off the eastbound roadway and through a ditch before hitting a tree. Varnado was not restrained in the vehicle and died at the scene, police said.
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