Tragedy struck Atlanta on New Year’s Eve when Kathy Porter, wife of the head trainer of the Atlanta Braves, was struck and killed by a Georgia State Police (GSP) patrol car. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, veteran state trooper Donald Crozier was en route to a chase on I-20 involving a motorcyclist that had failed to yield for a traffic stop. As he reached the crest of a hill at the intersection of Memorial Drive and Capitol Avenue, he smashed into a Ford Expedition SUV driven by Atlanta Braves trainer, Jeff Porter. Jeff Porter, as well as his 19-year-old son David and 18-year-old Courtney Williams, were injured and taken to Grady Memorial Hospital but later released.
An investigation into the accident is being carried out by the Georgia State Police, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and the Fulton County District Attorney’s office. In addition to the agencies, Georgia State Patrol’s Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team is reconstructing the accident to try to ascertain the cause. The GSP has said that the officer had both his lights and his siren activated before the accident. Jeff Porter, his wife, his son, and a friend were reportedly on their way to the Chick-fil-A-Bowl at the time of the accident.
The tragic accident has had strong repercussions, coalescing with an Atlanta politician calling for a stop to police chases. A former Atlanta police chief and current Clayton County Commission Chair, Eldrin Bell said that innocent people are often caught in harm’s way and that the entire police force in Georgia should reconsider police chases. In reports, he bluntly stated, "They know it's dangerous. They do need to stop.” This is not the first time in recent memory that a police chase has killed an innocent driver in Georgia. Kristie Priano, Zannie Hatcher, and Bonnie Vicks are just a few of the names of those killed in Georgia in the last ten years as a disastrous consequence of police chases.
If you or a loved one is injured in an automobile accident, you may be entitled to enter a lawsuit to recover damages for medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Since determining guilt in a car accident needs to be done as soon after the crash as possible, do not hesitate to contact a dedicated Atlanta car accident attorney. A quality attorney can help ensure that your rights are protected after an accident. Contact us today for a free, no-risk case evaluation form.