Laplace man killed in St. Helena Parish crash

Published 6:50 pm Friday, March 12, 2021

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Greensburg – On Friday, March 12, 2021, shortly before 11:30 am, Louisiana State Police Troop L began investigating a fatal crash on LA 37 east of LA 449 in St. Helena Parish.  The crash claimed the life of 78-year-old James R. Epperly Jr. of Laplace.

The initial investigation revealed that Epperly was eastbound on LA 37 on a 2016 Suzuki Burgman 650 motorcycle when the roadway began to curve to the left.  For reasons still under investigation, Epperly’s motorcycle exited the roadway to the right into a ditch where it began to overturn and ejected him.

Epperly was wearing a non-approved helmet and sustained fatal injuries during the crash.  He was pronounced deceased on the scene by the St. Helena Parish Coroner’s Office.  Impairment is not suspected, however, as part of the ongoing investigation, a blood sample was taken from Epperly for scientific analysis.  The crash remains under investigation.

Troopers urge drivers to always be aware of motorcyclists around them, and likewise, urge motorcyclists to engage in safe riding practices when on our roadways. Motorcyclists should practice safe and responsible operator behavior such as obeying speed limits, wearing a helmet, and never operating their motorcycle under any form of impairment.