May 04, 2014
Fla. trooper killed in collision
Officer Down: Chelsea Renee Richard - [Ocala, Florida]
End of Service: 05/03/2014
By Kevin P. Connolly and Desiree Stennett
OCALA, Fla. — A nine-year veteran of the Florida Highway Patrol and a tow-truck driver were killed in a crash Saturday on Interstate 75 near Ocala.
Trooper Chelsea Renee Richard, 30, stopped near mile marker 341 on southbound I-75 at 1:40 p.m. after two cars crashed in the area. Both cars were pulled off the highway onto the shoulder.
About 20 minutes later, as Richard was talking with the tow-truck driver, John Duggan, 57, of Levy County, another multi-vehicle crash happened in the same area.
After a seven-vehicle pileup, the driver of a southbound pickup traveled onto the east shoulder where the trooper stood with Duggan and a third man, George Robert Phillip, 52, of Ocala.
The pickup struck Richard, Duggan and Phillip. Both Richard, an Ocala resident who had a 4-year-old son, and Duggan were killed at the scene. Phillip remained in critical conditon at Ocala Regional Hospital late Saturday.
The traffic-homicide investigation caused delays in the area for several hours.
Troopers are still working to figure out what caused the second crash and why the driver of the pickup veered off the road and onto the shoulder.
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