Fatal crash

Louisiana State Police is reminding people to practice safe driving after troopers investigated two fatal crashes in Livingston Parish within a four-hour span late Wednesday and early Thursday.

The first accident occurred shortly after 11 p.m. Wednesday in Denham Springs on Hwy. 1030 (Cockerham Road), south of LA Hwy. 1026 (Lockhart Road).

The crash claimed the life of 41-year-old Jessica Brown of Denham Springs.

According to a statement from LSP spokesperson Taylor Scrantz, Brown was traveling eastbound on Cockerham Road in a 2012 Chevrolet Camaro. For reasons still under investigation, the Chevrolet exited the left side of the roadway and struck a tree.

Brown, who was unrestrained at the time of the crash, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased on the scene. As part of the ongoing investigation, a toxicology sample was obtained from Brown for analysis.

The second fatal wreck in Livingston Parish occurred shortly after 3:30 am Thursday on Interstate 12 at the Satsuma entrance ramp.

The crash claimed the life of Brandon Welch, a 23-year-old from Ethel.

According to Scrantz, Welch and another unidentified pedestrian were walking in the westbound Satsuma entrance ramp to Interstate 12 at the same time a 2004 Chevrolet Acadia was traveling westbound on the Satsuma entrance ramp in an attempt to merge onto Interstate 12.

“As the Chevrolet approached the two pedestrians, Welch and the other unidentified pedestrian ran in two different directions,” Scratnz said. “The driver of the Chevrolet swerved onto the shoulder in an attempt to avoid both pedestrians; however, was unsuccessful and struck Welch.”

Welch sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased on the scene. The driver of the Chevrolet was properly restrained and was not injured. As part of the ongoing investigation, toxicology samples were obtained from Welch and the driver of the Chevrolet for analysis.

To conclude the statement regarding the two fatal accidents, State Police urged the public “to take a moment to put the safety of you and your loved ones ahead of everything else.”

“The difficult assignment of death notification continues to be one of the hardest elements of the Law Enforcement profession,” the statement said. “Notification is even more difficult when Troopers know that the outcome was preventable. Please take a moment to put the safety of you and your loved ones ahead of everything else.

“Aside from sound decisions behind the wheel, speak to your family and friends about the consequences of impaired driving. Remind them that putting on a seatbelt greatly reduces the chances of being killed or seriously injured in a crash. Speak to them about the dangers of distracted driving. The conversation you have today could be the difference tomorrow.”

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