Fatal crash under investigation

By James Mitchell
Sunday Times Newspapers

SOUTHGATE — Investigators with the Southgate, Wyandotte and Michigan State Police are looking into a fatal car crash that took the life of a Melvindale woman on July 8.

About 6 p.m. that day, a Dodge Stratus traveling west on Sycamore reportedly hit a Chevrolet Blazer traveling south on Burns. The Blazer rolled over twice and the driver of the Blazer, a woman in her 30s, was pronounced dead at the site.

Neither the woman nor the three other passengers in the Blazer who received minor injuries appeared to have been wearing seat belts. The Stratus driver who crossed a yield sign was the lone occupant of the vehicle.

Charges may be filed against that driver, Southgate Public Safety Director Thomas Coombs said, depending on the speed the woman was driving and other factors.

“They’ve downloaded the information from the black box,” Coombs said of the Blazer. “If the box indicates that the car was traveling at or near the posted speed limit, there will probably be charges against the other driver.”

Coombs said that if the Blazer was traveling at excessive speeds, “that could negate some of the responsibility of the driver who had the yield sign.”

Information on the driver of the Stratus was not released pending the results of the investigation. Southgate Police are investigating as part of the Downriver Crash Investigation Team, including officers from the Michigan State Police and Wyandotte Police.

“If they had their seat belts on, this would have been just another crash,” Coombs said.