Speed Suspected Factor in Crash That Killed Unrestrained Passenger

Published 11:39 am Friday, February 11, 2022

Lafourche Parish – On February 11, 2022, shortly before 2:00 a.m., Louisiana State Police Troop C was notified of a single-vehicle fatality crash on Louisiana Highway 308 near Marcello Boulevard. The crash claimed the life of 22-year-old Eli Sternfels of Thibodaux.

The preliminary investigation revealed the driver of a 2017 Dodge Challenger, 22-year-old Sonny Charpentier of Thibodaux, was traveling south on LA Hwy 308 at a high rate of speed. For reasons still under investigation, the Challenger traveled off the roadway to the right while in a curve. The vehicle then struck a culvert and utility pole before coming to rest.

Although Charpentier was properly restrained at the time of the crash, he suffered severe injuries and was transported to an out-of-area hospital for treatment. Sternfels, who was a passenger, was unrestrained at the time of the crash. He suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.

A toxicology sample was collected from Charpentier and submitted for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.

When a motorist speeds, they increase their chances of losing control, reduce their ability to react to and avoid a roadway hazard, and extend the distance necessary to stop a vehicle. Additionally, taking just 3 seconds to buckle up is your best defense for surviving a traffic crash. Always ensure every occupant is properly restrained. Every trip. Every time.

Troop C has investigated 6 fatal crashes resulting in 6 deaths in 2022.