SMITHVILLE, TX (01/04/2016) — Jessie Lavern Davis was killed, and a 2-year-old child was critically injured, when a drunk driver struck their vehicle on Monday afternoon.
Authorities have identified 60-year-old Jessie Lavern Davis as the victim of a deadly car accident that occurred on State Highway 304 at the FM 2571 intersection (near Tiner Cutoff) in Smithville, Texas.
Police reported that at around 1:10 p.m., 23-year-old Philip John, Jr., of Cuero, was traveling in Chevrolet pickup truck (pulling a trailer) when he broadsided a Dodge pickup truck. John, Jr. was said to have been intoxicated at the time of the crash.
“It’s very odd for 1 o’clock on a Monday to have an intoxicated driver,” said DPS Trooper Dane Baker.
Authorities believe John was driving northbound on Texas 304 when he crossed into the southbound lane and struck Davis’ pickup truck.
Jessie Davis lost her life in the wreck. A 2-year-old girl, who was Davis’ passenger, was transported to Dell Children’s Hospital via medical helicopter after suffering critical injuries. She is in “serious but stable condition” as of Tuesday afternoon.
John Jr. was arrested and charged with intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault. A spokeswoman for the Bastrop County Sheriff’s Office says that a third charge is pending, citing the severity of the injuries to the child in the car accident.
Texas unfortunately leads the nation in drunk driving accidents. Back in 2013 alone, 1,337 people died in the state of Texas as a result of alcohol-related accidents (which accounts for 39.5% of all fatal crashes). We cannot stress enough the necessity for seeking alternative transportation methods rather than getting behind the wheel after drinking. Services such as Uber, Lyft, or even calling a cab could help save your life, and importantly, the lives of others on the roadway.
Our thoughts are with the families affected by this tragic accident. By informing the public of these tragic accidents, it’s our hope that Texans become more-aware of how big an issue drunk driving actually is. We as a community have the power to drive change, but it takes a collective (as well as individual) effort to curb the scourge of intoxicated driving.