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Driver Killed in Head-On Crash in St. Martin Parish

ST. MARTIN PARISH – Shortly before 5:30 p.m. on June 4, 2020, Louisiana State Police Troop I was notified of a two-vehicle fatal crash on LA Hwy 182 near Boudreaux Road in St. Martin Parish.
The crash claimed the life of 46-year-old Brandon Jeanbatiste of St. Martinville.
The preliminary investigation revealed a 2001 Mitsubishi Mirage, driven by Jeanbatiste, was traveling West on LA 182. At the same time, a 2005 Chevrolet Suburban, being driven by a 16-year-old licensed driver, was traveling East on LA 182. For reasons still under investigation, the 16-year-old failed to negotiate a curve and crossed the center line. The Suburban stuck the Mitsubishi head-on in the westbound lane of travel.
Troopers determined Jeanbatiste, despite being restrained at the time of the crash, suffered fatal injuries. He was pronounced deceased at the scene by the St. Martin Parish Coroner’s Office. The two occupants of the Suburban were both restrained. The passenger was transported to a local hospital with moderate injuries, while the driver was not injured. Toxicology samples were taken from Jeanbatiste and results are pending. The driver of the Suburban submitted a breath sample which indicated no alcohol present. This crash remains under investigation and charges are pending.
Louisiana State Troopers would like to take this opportunity to remind motorists to always make good decisions while operating motor vehicles. Never drive while impaired, fatigued, or distracted. Always ensure every occupant is properly restrained, being mindful of recent changes in child passenger seat laws, and follow all traffic laws. Taking simple precautions such as these can often mean the difference between life and death.
Troop I has investigated 21 fatal crashes resulting in 24 deaths since the beginning of 2020.

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