Fatal crash claims lives of two unrestrained occupants

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen

Louisiana State Police, Troop A investigated a single vehicle fatal crash in Ascension Parish that claimed the lives of two unrestrained occupants.  The crash occurred shortly after 2:30 a.m. Saturday on US 61 south of LA 621.  The vehicle was speeding away after Gonzales Police Officers had initiated a stop for a traffic violation.  Troopers investigated the crash at the request of the Gonzales Police Department, but GPD Officers are investigating the circumstances surrounding the initial traffic stop and subsequent pursuit.

Troopers preliminary investigation revealed that Joshua Davis (B/M, age 24) of Westwego was driving a 1998 Dodge Stratus north on US 61 at a high rate of speed, attempting to elude Gonzales Police Officers in pursuit, when he ran off the road to the left.  Davis overcorrected to the right and the vehicle re-entered the roadway, began to rotate clockwise, and ran off the road to the right.  As the vehicle slid off the roadway to the right, it entered a ditch and struck a culvert, vaulting it into the air.  The vehicle flipped approximately two times before striking a large sign post in the front of the Ascension Baptist Church.  Neither the driver nor the two additional occupants were wearing seat belts.  Davis and the rear seat passenger, Lerone Ursin (B/M, age 40) of Convent, were both pronounced dead at the scene by the Ascension Parish Coroner’s Office.  The front seat passenger, Quanmaine Scott (B/M, age 17) of Prairieville, fled the scene on foot.  Scott sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was taken into custody shortly after the crash and treated for his injuries at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Gonzales.  It is unknown if impairment was a factor in the crash, and Troopers have submitted a sample of Davis’ blood to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for chemical analysis.  Speed and lack of seat belt use are considered factors in the two deaths