A 29-year-old woman died and three others were injured in a crash Thursday morning after she ran a red light trying to get away from an officer who tried to pull her over, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.
Three other vehicles were involved in the crash at the intersection of Beach Boulevard and St. Johns Bluff Road just after 10:30 a.m., and the others hurt in the crash were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries.
On Friday morning police identified Timicia Denise Wimberly was the driver of the vehicle that was westbound near Interstate 295 and being followed by an officer who had his lights and sirens on. Police said Wimberly didn't stop, and due to traffic, the officer turned his lights and sirens off and slowed down.
Police said Wimberly turned north on St. Johns Bluff, then did a U-turn and went through the a red light at the intersection with Beach, striking three vehicles proceeding through the green light.
Investigators said there was another passenger and a baby in Wimberly's car. Their injuries were non-life-threatening.
The Wimberly's fiance told Channel 4 he was on the phone with his sister, who was the passenger in the car, and was trying to get his fiancee to pull over. He said the baby in the car is his 9-month-old nephew.
Robert Crawford was driving this white pickup truck eastbound on Beach through the intersection when he was hit.
"I was maybe 50 feet from the intersection when I got hit. I was trying to stop when I saw the white car," Crawford said. "I just tried to avoid the accident. I thought I was in the clear, but then felt the impact."
Because of the impact of the crash, a silver Cadillac SUV ended up at least five lanes away from where it was struck. Rescuers had to cut the roof off the SUV to get the driver out. The driver was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
All lanes of Beach were closed until about 2:20 p.m. while police investigated and cleared the road.
Police said the officer was trying to conduct a traffic stop on Wimberly because she had an active warrant for violation of probation on drug charges.
"We had her address where she lived, and due to the traffic, there was no need to pursue the vehicle," JSO spokeswoman Melissa Bujeda said. "So that's why they turned their emergency equipment off and held back."
Crawford is thankful that the impact to his car wasn't much worse.
"I ended up where I'm up right there in the pole," he said. "It spun me around, knocked me around a little bit. But I was wearing my seat belt."