Baton Rouge, Louisiana
7 Day Forecast
Follow our weather team on social media

Former Addis Police officer pleads guilty to manslaughter, negligent injuring for fatal police pursuit that killed 2

Related Story

ADDIS - A former Addis Police officer pleaded guilty to manslaughter and negligent injuring Monday for a fatal chase that killed two teenagers on New Year's Eve in 2022.

Former officer David Cauthron ran a red light while chasing a suspect and crashed into a car, killing Brusly High students Maggie Dunn and Caroline Gill. Cauthron was driving 85 miles per hour and never hit his brakes before the crash, sources told WBRZ.

Cauthron was allowed to resign from the Addis Police Department weeks after the wreck. The town council accepted his resignation in February. 

Maggie Dunn's father spoke after Cauthron pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 32 years in prison, with 22 of those years suspended. 

"We are glad that this process is over but it will never be over for us. We will continue to grieve for the rest of our lives and we all agree that David Cauthron issued a life sentence to our kids that day and we have to deal with it. He will get out of prison and be able to experience all those things that they were not able to experience. We hope he experiences those things and remembers Caroline and Maggie and that this changes his life forever," Randall Dunn said.

Upon release, Cauthorn is barred from working in law enforcement and must speak to law enforcement and schools about his actions to hopefully prevent something similar from happening in the future.

Cauthron will report to the West Baton Rouge Jail in May.

"You know, I've done this for 30 something years. Today was one of the most gut-wrenching moments I've had in court. I've prosecuted serial killers, I've prosecuted some of the toughest cases but hearing what I heard today just leaves you speechless," District Attorney Tony Clayton said.

The crash happened in Brusly while Cauthron was chasing Tyquel Zanders, who was accused of stealing a family member's car in Baton Rouge before fleeing into West Baton Rouge Parish. Zanders was also indicted on manslaughter charges.

Video obtained by WBRZ showed Cauthron speeding through a red light in his police unit and slamming into the side of the teens' car. Cauthron joined the chase as it made its way through West Baton Rouge and was leading the pursuit just seconds before the wreck.

Sources told the WBRZ Investigative Unit that Cauthron was going 86 miles per hour just before impact and that he did not use his brakes. District Attorney Tony Clayton said video from inside Cauthron's vehicle was critical to his case. 

A brother of Maggie, Liam Dunn, was injured in the wreck and suffered from a concussion, a broken femur and a broken wrist and ribs. He survived and was able to speak to Cauthron directly about the loss of his sister.

"I always wondered where my sister would go to college and what kind of woman she would be. I know both Maggie and Caroline both would have gone on to do amazing things. You singlehandedly caused two beautiful, young girls to be gone forever. Robbing them of so many of life's little treasures and memories. You also altered the trajectory of my life," Liam Dunn said.


Desktop News

Click to open Continuous News in a sidebar that updates in real-time.
7 Days