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Panther Creek High student dies after wreck

Posted December 14, 2009
Updated December 15, 2009

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— A Panther Creek High School sophomore died Sunday on injuries she suffered in a wreck last week, officials said.

Susan Othman, 17, and her 16-year-old sister, Yasmine, were on their way to school last Tuesday when the wreck occurred on Good Hope Church Road, near N.C. Highway 55, authorities said.

Susan Othman, a senior at Panther Creek High, was driving a 2003 Nissan 350Z and tried to pass a 2002 Chevrolet pickup truck driven by William Paul Phillips of Apex. Phillips told authorities that he spilled coffee on himself and jerked the wheel, sending his truck over the center line, which authorities said forced the Othmans' car off the left side of the road.

The Nissan struck a tree stump, and Yasmine Othman, who wasn't wearing a seat belt, suffered serious injuries to her head and legs, authorities said. She died Sunday.

Susan Othman, who was in Duke University Hospital for several days after the wreck, was charged with improper passing and speeding. Authorities said she was driving at about 45 mph in a 35-mph zone.

Phillips will face a charge of driving left of center, authorities said.


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  • ckblackm Dec 15, 2009

    Spilled coffee on himself... bull.

  • itirksmest8 Dec 15, 2009

    speed limit on that road is 35. It is a double yellow line coming out of a curve.
    All that aside....RIP Yasmine! And condolences to the family and friends!

  • OzzzMan Dec 14, 2009

    He tried to block her. I see this kind of driving all of the time. They need to investigate a little more.

  • leaderofthepack Dec 14, 2009

    The accident occurred on Good Hope Church Rd. Not 55 itself. Good Hope Church Rd is a windy and narrow two lane road very unsuitable for passing. That said, my thoughts and prayers are with the family.

  • question_why Dec 14, 2009

    Something to keep in mind, 55 is four lane for miles around the site of the accident. Passing is simply a matter of being in the left lane so the teenager was really doing little wrong. You would be hard pressed to find anyone going 35mph during this time of day on this road.

  • hebarnes1 Dec 14, 2009

    thank you..
    the young girl wasnt doing anything wrong.. yeah she was speeding she was going 45 MPH!!!! not 70 or anything.. and the man was the one who caused the wreck not the teen driver.. and youre right its not about whos fault it is its about there is a young girl who lost her sister and a family who lost a daughter.. and the man who has to live with that for the rest of his life. so please people if you have somehting rude to say please keep it to yourself.

  • twc Dec 14, 2009

    I'm wondering if Mr. Phillips may have been a little peeved at being passed.

    I'm also wondering why the charge is not misdemeanor death by motor vehicle. Coffee spill is not a legitimate defense.

  • APXmom Dec 14, 2009

    Wildcat- don't make any assumptions here. While the numbers of young people who make really bad choices is staggering, there are others who are simply at the wrong place at the wrong time. The last thing this family needs is an uninformed poster throwing darts of blame.

  • Here kitty kitty Dec 14, 2009


  • fatcat11 Dec 14, 2009

    I think this has been the worst 10day death toll I can ever remember.

    A lot of sadness in a bunch of families....sad..