Only minor injuries resulted after a driver crossed the median on Interstate 10 near mile marker 83 in Acadia Parish and struck an 18-wheeler Tuesday. 35-year-old Curtis Cheley, of DeRidder, was treated for minor injuries before being arrested by Louisiana State Police and charged with reckless driving and driving while intoxicated. After he posted bail, Cheley was later rearrested for battery on a police officer, resisting arrest, attempted carjacking, and interfering with the duties of a police officer. The additional charges were filed by the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office in connection with an encounter with Cheley prior to the arrival of State Police.
Interestingly, the moments leading up to the crash were filmed by a passing motorist. The motorist, Danny Leblanc, stated he called police after he witnessed the pick-up truck driving in front of him swerving wildly. After calling authorities, Leblanc began filming the vehicle using his mobile telephone. For approximately ten miles, the truck repeatedly drove onto and off of the median of the interstate. Finally, the eastbound truck drove into the westbound lanes of I-10. After the pick-up initially missed crashing directly into oncoming cars, the vehicle crashed into an 18-wheeler.
Although Leblanc failed to collect video footage of the crash itself, he pulled over and continued to record the events immediately following the crash. He has stated crash survivors exited their vehicles and the driver of the pick-up had a gash on his forehead. Leblanc also stated the driver appeared intoxicated and the man was allegedly difficult to communicate with. Leblanc claims Cheley refused to follow the orders of police on the scene and attempted to punch an officer. He also purportedly witnessed an officer use a taser on the driver of the pick-up in order to subdue him.
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Following graduation from Loyola Law School in New Orleans in 1990, Price McNamara served as a Federal Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable John M Shaw, Chief Judge, United States District Court Western District of Louisiana.
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