A convicted drunk driver is accused of second-offense OWI in a fiery three-vehicle accident Tuesday that killed 66-year-old Carol S. Richard of Lafayette, police said.
Bryce M. Chapman, 23, was traveling north on Moss Street around 6:15 p.m. when his Chevrolet Camaro crashed into Richard’s Ford Escape, which was stopped in the left turn lane that feeds into Halifax Drive, said Cpl. Paul Mouton, Lafayette Police spokesman.
The impact pushed Richard’s SUV into the southbound lane, where it collided with a Honda Element and immediately caught fire, killing Richard on the scene, Mouton said.
Chapman, of Lafayette, and the driver of the Element, whose identity was withheld, were hospitalized with minor injuries, Mouton said.
The crash remains under investigation.
Richard was a secretary with the Lafayette Parish School System’s media center, Superintendent Burnell Lejeune announced at Wednesday’s meeting of the Lafayete Parish School Board.
Chapman will be booked upon his release from the hospital on counts of vehicular homicide, vehicular negligent injuring, second-offense operating while intoxicated and careless operation, Mouton said. He had not been booked as Wednesday evening.
His arrest will bring the total number of OWI arrests in Lafayette on Mardi Gras to 13, according to booking records.
Mouton said the number is higher than normal, as additional officers who had worked the daytime parades were then patrolling the city’s entertainment district for drunken drivers.