2-year-old Simmsport girl killed in car crash; speed, alcohol suspected factors

By EverythingCenla

A 2-year-old Simmsport girl is dead as the result of a single-vehicle accident in which police suspect speed and alcohol were factors that led to the crash Wednesday morning in Pointe Coupee Parish, according to Louisiana State Police Troop A.

The Pointe Coupee Parish Coroner’s Office pronounced Keondre Edwards dead at the scene of the accident, which occurred shortly after 7 a.m. on Louisiana Highway 1 south of Louisiana 18. A second child sustained moderate injuries and was taken to Avoyelles General Hospital.

An investigation indicates Ashley Jones, 25, of Simmsport was driving a 2000 Chevrolet Impala north on Highway 1 when she entered a left-hand curve and ran off of the road to the right. Upon exiting the curve, the vehicle travelled through a ditch and began to roll over, ejecting the children, who were not restrained in their seats. Jones was also treated at Avoyelles General Hospital.

The children were in the back seat of the Impala. They were not in child safety seats or buckled in the back seat.

Troopers suspect that both alcohol and speed were factors in the crash. Troopers have submitted a sample of Jones’ blood to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for chemical analysis. Currently, Jones is charged with careless operation and two counts of failure to restrain a child. More charges may follow, pending the outcome of toxicology tests being performed on Jones’ blood.

Meanwhile, State police said it is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that every child under the age of 13 is properly secured in the vehicle. Both the children involved in this crash should have been restrained in forward-facing child safety seats.

Drunken drivers and lack of seat belt and child restraint use account for the majority of fatal crashes in Louisiana every year. There is never a good reason for an impaired person to get behind the wheel of an automobile.

While seat belt and child restraint use is on the rise in Louisiana, there is still a lot of work to be done. Troopers will continue to aggressively enforce Louisiana’s passenger restraint laws and DWI laws to ensure the public’s safety.

In addition, Louisiana State Police Troop A serves as a grant-funded Child Passenger Safety (CPS) Fitting Station, where Troopers inspect and install car seats for individuals at no charge. The Troopers are Certified CPS Technicians through the National Child Passenger Safety Certification Training Program.

This program is run by the Louisiana Passenger Safety Task Force. Troopers at Troop A are available to inspect and install child safety seats on Thursdays from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Anyone needing assistance with the inspection or installation of a car seat is encouraged to come in and meet with a CPS Technician. There are also programs available to those individuals who may not be able to afford a child safety seat.