08/08/2006

La. officer involved in on-duty fatal crash, may face homicide charges

The Associated Press   

WINNSBORO, La.- A Winnsboro police officer faces possible charges of negligent homicide and unsafe driving of an emergency vehicle after a wreck that killed another woman and injured her, state police said.

Officer Betty M. Harrell, 47, was not booked after the crash Monday because she was hospitalized, according to state police.

She had been sent to a traffic wreck about 7:45 a.m. near the Franklin Parish School Board office and drove through a red light when she hit a 2004 Ford Taurus driven by Debra Lee, 33, of Winnsboro on Louisiana Highway 15, police said.

Investigators believe that the squad car's lights and sirens were on.

At least one person was taken to a hospital after the earlier accident. School Superintendent Lanny Johnson said it appeared that a truck hit a car which was leaving a neighborhood across from the school system's office.

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Information from: The News-Star, http://www.thenewsstar.com

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