Fatality in Car Crash on Greenwell Springs Road

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News Release from Louisiana State Police

Louisiana State Police Troop A began investigating a fatal crash Friday evening shortly before 6:00 pm on LA 37 (Greenwell Springs Road) south of LA 408 (Hooper Road).

Troopers’ preliminary investigation revealed that Phillip Abington (W/M, age 16) of Greenwell Springs was driving a 2001 Honda Civic on Will Avenue when he attempted to make a left turn onto LA 37 northbound and pulled into the path of an on-coming 2005 Chevrolet pickup. The pickup, being driven by James Watts III (W/M, age 31) of Denham Springs, struck the passenger side of the Honda and ran off the road to the left. The Honda was pushed off the road and came to rest in the ditch along the east edge of the roadway. The pickup struck a tree on the west edge of the roadway and overturned, coming to rest on the driver door. The East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner’s Office pronounced Abington deceased on the scene. Watts sustained minor injuries and was transported to a local hospital.

Troopers do not suspect alcohol to have played a factor in the crash; however, they have submitted samples of both drivers’ blood to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for chemical analysis. The crash remains under investigation, and no charges have been filed at this time.

Troopers would like to remind the motoring public to remain vigilant while driving on the roadways. When pulling out from side roads and private drives, it is very important to see a clear roadway before proceeding. Drivers should never pull into a travel lane unless they are certain that the lane is clear of on-coming traffic. If there is an obstructed view, drivers should remain stationary until the obstruction is cleared. Motorists can call *LSP (*577) to report roadway hazards, dangerous conditions, or unsafe drivers.


  1. Maria Russell

    September 12, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    You may want to gather additional information on this accident. It is my understanding that the driver of the vehicle was arrested. Speed in excess of 90MPH is suspected.

  2. David Barrow

    September 12, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    **Update: September 11, 2011**

    Following the initial on-scene investigation of the crash, Troopers began looking more closely into the physical evidence of the crash and inconsistencies in statements. Through the continued investigation, Troopers were able to determine that Watts was traveling at a high rate of speed (90 mph, double the 45 mph speed limit) when the crash occurred. This high rate of speed was determined to have been a factor in the crash. Troopers arrested Watts and booked him into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on charges of reckless operation and not wearing a seatbelt. Additional charges may be forthcoming.

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