RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Three people were killed Thursday, including two women from Richmond, after a wrong-way crash on I-95 Express Lanes, according to Virginia State Police.
VSP said the incident started around 4:33 p.m. when a state trooper attempted to stop a 2008 Dodge Avenger traveling north on I-95 at 80 mph in a posted 65 mph zone in Spotsylvania County. The Dodge did not stop and a police chase started.
The trooper decided to end the pursuit because of heavy northbound traffic, VSP said. The Dodge continued to speed away in the left shoulder.
State police further north positioned themselves for the upcoming suspect vehicle. VSP said the Dodge was speeding again when it passed the trooper. The trooper decided to initiate another traffic stop but again the Dodge refused to stop and continued speeding north on I-95.
“The Dodge exited I-95 for the Express Lanes. It broke through three of the lighted Express Lanes gates at the entry as it headed north into the lanes that were switched for southbound traffic only,” VSP said in a release. “The trooper did not follow the Dodge into the Express Lanes.”
Once inside the Express Lanes, the Dodge struck a 2020 Ford Ranger pickup truck head-on in Prince William County. The truck landed on its side over the guardrail. Then, a 2016 Hyundai Tucson and a 2021 Volkswagen Atlas collided with the Dodge, causing the Dodge to catch fire.
VSP identified the driver of the Dodge as 46-year-old Stephanie T. Morton, of Richmond. She died at the scene of the crash. Authorities do not know if she was wearing a seatbelt.
The Dodge’s passenger, 26-year-old Tia O. Porter ,of Richmond, was ejected from the car and died at the scene.
8News spoke with Robert Peters of Richmond who saw the moments right after the crash. He said the Dodge looked like it was falling to pieces.
The driver of the Ford truck, 61-year-old Kenneth E. Crosby Jr., also died at the scene. Four other people were treated for minor injuries. All were wearing seatbelts.
VSP said they will continue to investigate this crash. Stay with 8News for the latest updates.