Gerald Wayne Carrothers Killed in 18-wheeler Accident in Shreveport, LA
Shreveport, LA — December 28, 2023, Gerald Wayne Carrothers was killed due to an 18-wheeler accident that happened at 5:00 a.m. on Greenwood Road.
Authorities said they were called out to the 8000 block of Greenwood Road. It appears a driver, identified by Caddo Parish officials as 71-year-old Gerald Wayne Carrothers, was going eastbound on Greenwood/U.S. Highway 79. Up ahead, police say Carrothers's vehicle collided with an 18-wheeler entering the roadway.
Due to the collision, Carrothers sustained fatal injuries. There were no other reported injuries. Right now, authorities have yet to release additional details about the crash. It's unclear if they're considering charges or citations in relation to the accident. Investigations are ongoing at this time.
I would be willing to bet that most people reading about this crash assume it’s open and shut. One driver pulled out in front of another and caused a crash. My experience tells me that things are rarely so simple.
For instance, I recently litigated a case with a very similar fact pattern. A commercial vehicle was pulling out of a private driveway when it collided with another motorist, fatally injuring that motorist. The deceased motorist’s family was shocked that the initial police report put their loved, not the commercial driver at fault for the crash. They called my firm, asked if I could help, and I agreed to look into the matter.
It became clear from the start of my investigation that the authorities never obtained key evidence from the crash. For instance, the truck was equipped with a real-time GPS tracking system. It created a timeline of the truck’s travels. Investigators never bothered to seek this information. Instead, they relied on a single eyewitness who said that the motorist was traveling at a high rate of speed prior to the crash.
The GPS data clearly showed that the truck driver pulled out of the private driveway without bothering to slow down or stop when he should have yielded to traffic. Authorities flat-out missed that. We then went back and interviewed the eyewitness. It turns out the officer taking his statement made a mistake. The witness’ testimony was that the motorist was traveling at highway speed on a road with a 50mph speed limit, not that he was speeding.
Long story short, we were able to prove that the investigation had flaws, including failing to collect evidence, misinterpreting evidence, and ultimately reaching the wrong conclusion. While we ultimately resolved the case in favor of the motorist’s family, sometimes, I still find myself wondering what would have happened had the family accepted the initial police report and not sought out help. No matter how you slice, it’s likely they would not only have the wrong impression about their loved one’s accident, but the person responsible for his death would have escaped accountable for his deadly actions. That’s an unsettling thought.