July 10, 2003

Highway Patrol Reports 14 Fatalities During July 4th Holiday Weekend

Fourteen people died in traffic crashes during this year's 78-hour July Fourth holiday counting period. This counting period began at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 3, 2003 and ended at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 6, 2003.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol reported 187 injuries in 307 traffic crashes, and made 135 driving while intoxicated arrests.

Last year, 20 fatalities were reported during a 102-hour counting period.

Of the 14 fatalities traffic crashes, five fatalities occurred in the areas of Troop D, Springfield, and Troop F, Jefferson City. There were two fatalities in the Troop I, Rolla, area. One fatality each occurred in the areas of Troop C, St. Louis, and Troop E, Poplar Bluff.

Three fatalities occurred on Thursday, July 3, 2003. Jason L. Summe, 20, of Devils Elbow, died after the vehicle he was driving crossed the center line and struck an oncoming vehicle head on. Summe was fleeing from a St. Robert Police Officer at the time of the traffic crash. The crash occurred in Pulaski County on Thunder Lane two miles south of St. Robert. The

person in the other vehicle sustained minor injuries. Neither was wearing a seat belt.

Danielle R. Stricklin, 16, of Cherryville, died after losing control of the vehicle she was driving. Her vehicle went off the right side of the roadway, she overcorrected causing her vehicle to slide off the left side of the roadway, strike a sign, and overturn several times before coming to rest on its top. Crawford County Coroner Paul Hutson pronounced Stricklin dead at the scene. She was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, which occurred in Crawford County on Missouri Highway 19 south of Steelville.

Tania A. Harris, 40, of Monett, died when the vehicle she was driving crossed the center line and struck an oncoming vehicle nearly head on. Barry County Coroner Skip White pronounced Harris dead at the scene. Harris was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, which occurred in Barry County on Missouri Highway 37 north of Purdy. The three occupants of the other vehicle sustained moderate to serious injuries; two were wearing seat belts. It is unknown whether or not the third person was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

Four fatalities occurred on Friday, July 4, 2003. John M. Cole, 58, of Theodosia, died when the vehicle he was driving ran off the roadway and overturned several times. Cole was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, which occurred in Taney County on U.S. Highway 160, 22 miles east of Forsyth. Taney County Coroner David Rozell responded to the scene.

Ashleigh N. Beal, 14, of Mexico, died while riding with another person on an ATV. The ATV traveled off the roadway, and overturned, ejecting both riders. Beal was pronounced dead by Audrain County Coroner Pat Farnen. The crash occurred in Audrain County on County Road 355 north of Missouri Highway 15. The person with Beal sustained serious injuries. The investigation continues in order to determine who was driving the ATV.

Wayne A. Peck, 33, of Joplin, died when a vehicle crossed the centerline and struck the motorcycle he was riding. The crash occurred in Jasper County west of Sarcoxie. Peck was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. Jasper County Coroner J.D. Love responded to the scene.

Steven C. Fields, 21, of DeSoto, died when the motorcycle he was riding traveled off the roadway and overturned. Fields was thrown from the cycle. He was pronounced dead by Dr. Sakabu at St. John's Mercy Medical Center.

Four fatalities occurred on Saturday, July 5, 2003. Michael W. Travis, 51, of Fulton, died when he lost control of the vehicle he was driving. Travis' vehicle traveled off the road, he overcorrected, causing the vehicle to cross the road and overturn. Travis was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle. The crash occurred in Callaway County on Route D south of Route O. Callaway County Medical Examiner Jean Sax pronounced Travis dead.

Kaleb L. Shern, 24, of Columbia, died when the vehicle he was driving entered a curve, traveled off the right side of the road, he then overcorrected several times, causing the vehicle to travel off one side and then the other side of the roadway before overturning. Shern was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle. Neither of the two passengers in Shern's vehicle was wearing seat belts. One was ejected from the vehicle and sustained moderate injuries. The other passenger sustained minor injuries. The crash occurred in Camden County on Route N north of U.S. Highway 54.

Glenn M. Scott, 50, and Lillie L. Scott, 50, both of Ozark, died when their vehicle failed to negotiate a curve, causing the vehicle to run off the right side of the roadway. The vehicle slid sideways, overturned three times, and came to rest on its wheels on the roadway. Both of the Scotts

were ejected from the vehicle. Moniteau County Coroner Lloyd Fulks pronounced both dead at the scene. Glenn Scott was driving at the time of the crash. The crash occurred in Moniteau County on U.S. Highway 50 west of Clarksburg. Neither person was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

Three fatalities occurred on Sunday, July 6, 2003. Oscar Torres, 24, of Siloam Spring, AR, died when the vehicle he was driving went off the left side of the roadway and struck a utility pole. The crash occurred in Barry County on Missouri Highway 112 east of Seligman. Barry County Coroner Skip White pronounced Torres dead at the scene.

Patrick Sack, 77, of Compton, IL, died when the vehicle he was driving ran off the roadway and overturned. Sack was not wearing his seat belt. The crash occurred in Wayne County on U.S. Highway 67 south of Greenville. Wayne County Coroner Barb Anderson pronounced Sack dead at the scene.

Jessie Bell, 16, of Harwood, died when the vehicle she was driving ran off the roadway, struck a ditch, and flipped end over end, ejecting Bell. Bell was not wearing her seat belt. The crash occurred in Cedar County on U.S. Highway 54 west of El Dorado Springs. Bell was pronounced dead at Cedar County Memorial Hospital.

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