ST TAMMANY PARISH, LA (WLOX) - A 14-year-old is dead, and two of his friends are either severely injured or under arrest after leading police on a high speed chase and crashing into an 18-wheeler driven by a Gulfport man.
It all started just after midnight in Covington when a Louisiana State Trooper stopped a Chevrolet Cobalt for going more than 100 miles an hour in a 55 mile an hour zone on US 190 near the intersection of LA 1077.
The driver, a 14-year-old boy, was being interviewed outside the car when investigators say the front seat passenger jumped over the center console into the driver's seat and took off.
The trooper loaded the original driver in his patrol car and radioed dispatch for backup. The trooper lost sight of the fleeing vehicle, but eventually came upon an accident scene about two miles down the road. The Cobalt had collided with an 18 wheeler.
Investigators identified this second driver of the Cobalt as Brandon Bigner, 21, of Franklinton, LA. They said the car swerved completely across the eastbound lane of US 190 onto the eastbound shoulder. Bigner then overcorrected to the right and into the path of an oncoming 18 wheeler operated by Walker Hurt, 62, of Gulfport.
The front of the 18 wheeler hit the left side of the Cobalt. That sent Bigner, who was not wearing a seatbelt, flying from the car. He suffered severe injuries and was taken North Oaks Hospital. Officials believe he was under the influence of alcohol, and blood samples were taken and submitted to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for analysis.
Sitting in the backseat, and wearing his seatbelt was Sloan McDow, 14, of Folsom. He died at the scene from injuries he sustained in the crash.
Hurt, the driver of the 18 wheeler, was also wearing his seatbelt and received minor injuries in the crash. Troopers don't suspect Hurt to have been impaired at the time of the crash. Still, Hurt voluntarily provided a blood sample which will be sent to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab for analysis.
Troopers arrested the original juvenile driver of the Cobalt for speeding and Underage DWI. He was released to the custody of his parents on a juvenile custodial agreement.
Charges for Bigner are pending his release from the hospital.