La. chief dies in crash during suspect pursuit

Officer Down: Chief David Richard
The Associated Press

PORT BARRE, La. A high-speed police chase has claimed the life of Port Barre's police chief.

State police Chief David Richard was killed last night after attempting to assist his officers in a high-speed pursuit of a suspect.

Troopers say the 54-year-old Richard was traveling eastbound on U.S. Highway 190 when he lost control of his vehicle before he could become involved in the pursuit.

Richard's vehicle ran off the road and slammed into trees, ejecting him from the car.

He died at the scene of the crash as a result of his injuries. Richard was in his fifth year as police chief.

The suspect being chased by Port Barre Police officers fled throughout Saint Landry Parish and into the jurisdiction of state police Troop A, which is in the Baton Rouge area.

The suspect crashed his vehicle in Pointe Coupee Parish and then fled on foot. About 4 hours later deputies and troopers arrested 38-year-old Stanley Bernard of Carencro. Bernard is being held in New Roads awaiting transfer back to Saint Landry Parish where he will face charges.

Troopers says the crash that killed Richard is under investigation.

Because of the severity of the collision, it is unknown if Richard was wearing his seat belt at the time of the crash.

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