Drunk driver kills Edgard man

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 6, 2000

LEONARD GRAY / L’Observateur / September 6, 2000

EDGARD – A drunk driver struck and killed an Edgard man early Saturday.

It was one of two accidents in the River Parishes over the Labor Day weekend and the only fatality.

Trooper Matthew J. Trahan of Louisiana State Police Troop C reported thatJerry Edwards, 39, was killed after stopping on River Road near West Third Street in Edgard with a mechanical problem Saturday at 3:27 a.m.Charlotte Lewis, 32, of Reserve, stopped to offer assistance and was injured in the accident.

As Edwards stepped out of his 1982 Ford F-150 pickup and walked back to talk to Lewis, who was still sitting in her car, a 2000 Chevrolet Malibu driven by Kieron Batiste, 34, of Reserve, struck the pair. Edwards died at thescene, and Lewis sustained minor injuries. She was treated at River ParishesHospital in LaPlace and released.

Batiste was charged by police with vehicular homicide and driving while intoxicated, Trahan reported, and he was booked at the Sherman R. WalkerCorrectional Center.

Trahan advised that a driver who finds himself in that situation should move their vehicle as far off the roadway as possible and activate their emergency flashers, even if there is no shoulder.

There were few traffic problems in the River Parishes until early Monday, when a wreck on Interstate 10 in St. John the Baptist Parish left severalpeople injured, including a Plaquemine woman who was taken to River Parishes Hospital in critical condition.

According to Trooper Kevin Cannatella of Louisiana State Troop B, at 1:40 a.m. Monday a 1993 Cadillac Deville, driven by Telyega L. Bosley, 28, ofPlaquemine, was westbound on I-10 in the left lane when a rear tire blew.

She lost control of the car, which veered off the roadway to the right, then struck and rolled over a guard rail. The car then slammed into a wooded area,where she was thrown from the vehicle.

Her passengers included Delma D. Richard, 29, of Baton Rouge; Daffanie D.Lowery, 26, of Plaquemine; Gregory McClay Jr., 25, of Plaquemine; andShawaine Butler, 19, address unavailable.

Bosley and Lowery were transported to River Parishes Hospital, and Bosley was later transferred to Charity Hospital as her condition stabilized. Lowerywas later released. McClay and Butler were transported to Our Lady of theLake Hospital in Baton Rouge and later released. Richard was not transportedfor medical attention.

Cannatella advised motorists who may find themselves in a similar situation, “Number one, don’t panic. Number two, don’t slam on the brakes. Gentlyapply the brakes and steer your vehicle off the roadway.”He added that a driver can lose control no matter if the blown tire is front or rear, and added, “Don’t make any jerking motion with the steering wheel.”He also took note that Bosley was not wearing a seatbelt and was therefore ejected from the vehicle.

In other Labor Day weekend news, Cannatella said a widely-publicized plan to set up DWI checkpoints, and that Troop B had no holiday weekend fatalities for the second consecutive year, was “a great accomplishment.”Cannatella added that the accomplishment during the weekend was especially good considering that Troop B has one of the highest population of any Louisiana State Police region and two-thirds of the driving population.

Only one checkpoint was set up in Metairie, which resulted in three arrests.

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