Driver in multiple car crash dies


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Updated: 10/01/2013 4:11 pm Published: 9/30/2013 4:44 pm


A man accused of running from police and causing a multiple car accident has died.  

Tulsa police report they attempted to stop Joey Williams, 27, for a seat belt violation but he eluded police. 

Officers later found out Williams had a suspended license.

Police say Williams ran through a stop sign at East Newton Street and hit off-duty Tulsa District Fire Chief Ben Herring who was traveling north on Yale Avenue.

"I just up got up in time to see the car and pick up slide in front of my yard," said Dennis Woodward.

He heard the impact and witnessed what happened after the crash.

Witnesses said the man in the red truck, Ben Herring, was able to get out of the smashed truck.

"He got out on his own and walked around and collapsed on the ground. He was hurt, he was hurt pretty bad," said Woodward.

Witnesses says Herring was worried about everyone involved.

"He was more concerned about everyone else other than himself," said Woodward.

The man in the silver Mercury Sable was identified as Williams and police said he was trapped.

"The car was so crumbled up around him there wasn't anything we could do," said Woodward.

Witnesses said while emergency crews used the jaws of life on the silver car they didn't know if Williams was going to make it.

"I thought someone has got to be dead," said witness Larry Ruggles.

Traffic officers aid Williams died on the scene and came back and is in the ICU in critical condition.

"He looked like he was in pretty bad shape," said Woodward.

Police said it started around 1:20 p.m. when a traffic officer attempted to pull over Williams on east Pine Street for a seat belt violation.

When Williams got into the neighborhood police said Williams was driving recklessly so they terminated the stop.

"When the silver car hit the first speed bump and went airborne the officer hit the lights and sirens and decided it wasn't worth a traffic violation," said TPD Traffic Sgt. Chris Witt.

However, the driver kept going and hit a second speed hump where police showed FOX23 News the scratch marks on the road.

Police believe Williams was going between 50 mpg and 70 mph.

"The speedometer is stuck on 68 mph," said Witt.

Police say Williams died on Tuesday afternoon.

The man in the grease truck was picked up by his company.

Police do not know why Williams was running from police. He did not have warrants but was driving on a suspended license.

Online court records did not show Williams had a violent record.

The Tulsa Fire Department said Herring has been on the department for more than 25 years.


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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

FiltingbergerS - 10/2/2013 9:33 AM
0 Votes
MIA Darwinism, are you that perfect that you have never messed up and have always followed all laws?! He did not deserve to die and for his family to loose him. You or anyone else really knows what went on. Everyone is just going off what the cop said and the fact he may be a criminal. Learn the facts before you judge and put your worthless opinion out there. What if it was someone close to you? Wouldn't have the same opinion would you?

MrsEWarren - 10/1/2013 10:35 AM
2 Votes
MIA Darwinism, is this what you meant by getting what he deserved? This young man has a family and they are mourning regardless of how stupid what he did was. His license was suspended, he should have just taken the punishment. I am thankful that no one else was hurt but the young man is being removed from life support this morning. My sister has lost her partner, my 5 year old nephew has lost his father. The young man's mother has lost her son and his little brother a sibling. I wish he had just pulled over.

MIA Darwinism - 10/1/2013 5:58 AM
2 Votes
This type of story goes to show that our police officers face a battle no matter what decision they make. It says they called the chase off but the criminal still made his own choice to continue driving like a criminal. Maybe the seat belt violation wasn't worth it in the long run, but really is it that difficult to reach over yourself and snap that latch? The police are doing their job, they may be annoying laws and if you don't agree with them then stand up and voice, but don't blame the men and women who are only doing their job based on the laws and not some personal vendetta. If you don't do your job do you not get in trouble? Do you not face possible termination? But let's look at the bigger picture, it is yet another criminal who somehow becomes a victim of his own choices. He get's what he rightfully deserves, to bad he had to hurt other's in the process of his own stupidity.

Unwashed Mass - 9/30/2013 11:40 PM
2 Votes
One one hand, the guy was willing to run for a seat belt violation. On the other hand, TPD was willing to chase someone for a seat belt violation..... Apparently neither had any sense.

karlschneider - 9/30/2013 4:58 PM
2 Votes
Police chases RARELY are worth the risk to anyone involved or in the path of them. Cop mentality is the obvious and clear explanation of why they are so common...the average young cop gets a lot of excitement by chasing down "bad guys" which is understandable but not very smart. Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of rookie policemen. There is almost never a rational excuse for a cop to conduct a high speed chase.
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