NEW ALBANY – Troopers from the Indiana State Police (ISP) post in Sellersburg are investigating a fatal crash after a driver allegedly fled when New Albany police attempted to pull the car over.
While this investigation is still ongoing, investigators believe that around 2 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, an officer with the New Albany Police Department attempted to stop a gray Dodge Challenger near the intersection of State and Clay streets for traffic violations related to reckless driving. The driver of the Challenger immediately fled down State Street at a high rate of speed, and the officer chose not to pursue.
Approximately one minute later, the Challenger collided with a white Toyota Highlander that had entered State Street from the Target parking lot. After striking the Highlander, the Challenger continued off the roadway and into a nearby parking lot, colliding with a parked bus. After the Challenger came to rest, the car soon caught fire.
The officer who initially attempted to stop the car arrived and pulled one occupant from the vehicle. Responders were unable to remove a second occupant from the Challenger. That person was later pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver of the Toyota Highlander was transported to University Hospital in Louisville and has been identified as Gwendolyn Hartman, 60, of Georgetown, Indiana.
The injured occupant of the Challenger was also transported to University Hospital.
Both injured subjects are listed with non-life-threatening injuries.
The names of the Challenger occupants are not being released at this time pending positive identification.
The New Albany Police Department requested an Indiana State Police crash reconstruction team investigate the crash. ISP troopers and detectives worked well into the evening before clearing the crash scene.
This crash is still under investigation, and investigators will conduct interviews and review any video as they piece together all pertinent information from the time of the initial attempted traffic stop until the time of the crash.
This news release will be updated as new information is released.