Unrestrained 2-year-old dead, 10 injured in three-vehicle crash on U.S. 61
ZACHARY - A 2-year-old is dead and 10 others are injured following a three-vehicle crash on U.S. 61 Friday evening.
Louisiana State Police troopers said the crash happened around 6 p.m. on U.S. 61 south of LA 64 in East Baton Rouge Parish.
Troopers originally reported two people had been killed in the crash. Later, officials told WBRZ paramedics were able to resuscitate one child, originally reported dead by police.
Less than 6 hours after Troopers were passing out gifts to kids at Troop A, they are now investigating the death of an unrestrained child in a 3 vehicle crash. #buckleup— LA State Police (@LAStatePolice) December 23, 2017
Through the initial investigation, State Police determined the crash occurred as 38-year-old Clara Peterson of Zachary was traveling southbound on US 61 in a 2015 Nissan Altima. Peterson began slowing down to make a right turn from the right lane of US 61. At the same time, A 2009 Chevrolet Impala driven by 28-year-old Keshon Forest of Zachary also began slowing in the right lane behind Peterson's vehicle.
For reasons still under investigation, a 2015 Chevrolet Silverado driven by 32-year-old James Lopresto Jr. of Greenwell Springs failed to reduce its speed and struck the rear of Forest's vehicle, according to State Police. The impact of the crash pushed Forest's vehicle forward, causing it to strike Peterson's vehicle.
Two-year-old Christian Johnson was a passenger in Forest's vehicle. He was unrestrained at the time of the crash and sustained fatal injuries as a result. Forest and the four other passengers in her vehicle sustained moderate injuries. Peterson and the three additional passengers in her vehicle also sustained moderate injuries in the crash, State Police said. Lopresto sustained minor injuries and was treated at the scene.
Impairment is not suspected to be a factor in this crash, but a standard toxicology sample will be taken from all three drivers.
This crash remains under investigation and charges are pending, according to State Police. Check back for updates.