Local News

Police: Driver in fatal Raleigh wreck was speeding, impaired

Posted October 14, 2014

One person was killed Monday afternoon in a wreck on Creedmoor Road between Sawmill and Lynn roads in Raleigh. (Adam Owens/WRAL)
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— The woman whose SUV crashed Monday afternoon on Creedmoor Road, killing a 12-year-old boy, was speeding and was under the influence at the time, according to a police report released Tuesday.

Laura Lynne Smith, 49, of 8617 Wellesley Way in Raleigh, lost control of her Chevrolet K1500 Suburban between Sawmill and Lynn roads, and the SUV ran off the road, hit three trees and overturned, coming to rest against a fourth tree, according to the accident report.

"They were driving very erratically before they ran off the road," said a woman who called 911 to report the crash. "I almost got hit by them."

The report indicates that the SUV was traveling at 74 mph in a 45-mph zone at the time of the crash. The report also notes that Smith had a blood-alcohol content of 0.32, which is four times the level at which a driver is considered impaired under North Carolina law.

Passenger Antony Smith died in the crash. He and Laura Lynne Smith share the same address, but there was no information in the police report to indicate how they are related.

Laura Smith was taken to WakeMed with serious but non-life threatening injuries.

She was charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and exceeding a safe speed.

The accident closed the southbound lanes of Creedmoor Road for about three hours.

Monday's crash was the first fatal wreck along that stretch of Creedmoor Road in at least three years, according to state Department of Transportation statistics.

Since Sept. 1, 2011, 66 crashes have been reported on Creedmoor Road between Sawmill and Lynn Roads, including 26 involving injuries, DOT statistics show.

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  • frosty Oct 15, 2014

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    I was told by a doctor some time ago, if I remember the numbers correctly, that if a person's blood alcohol level is over .22 and they are still moving around is an indicator of a serious and probably long standing problem.

    But I am not a doctor and do not play one on TV.

  • missdawg Oct 15, 2014

    When you have a child, your partying days should be over. Your life should be about nothing but that child and how to build a bright future for them. If you can't handle having a child, there are plenty of people who are willing to adopt them and give them a better life. RIP Antony.

  • winemaker81 Oct 15, 2014

    "Not gonna fly, since injuries and death are unintentional, committed in an impaired state of mind, and are therefore NOT premeditated." -- GRUTEGRRL

    I agree with you, it won't fly.

    But it should. The drunk person is impaired through their own actions, and should be held accountable for all damages caused by those actions.

  • Page Mee Oct 15, 2014
    user avatar

    Not to downplay the responsibility of this driver, but perhaps when we start teaching children about inappropriate touching and abuse in the schools, we should enforce safety which includes reporting alcohol abuse. At 12yo, this poor child had to be terrified but didn't know what to do.

  • Mike Hill Oct 15, 2014
    user avatar

    I agree with TGCMISC, we do not apply accusations in the court of public opinion equally and unfortunately this politically correct subjectivity does flow into our supposed objective courtroom. The woman is going to have aburden to bear the rest of her life, and the DA will go for voluntary manslaughter.

  • Jenna Brutegrrl Oct 15, 2014
    user avatar

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    "Reclassify injuries that occur as a result of DUI as attempted murder, and classify deaths as 1st degree murder."

    Not gonna fly, since injuries and death are unintentional, committed in an impaired state of mind, and are therefore NOT premeditated.

  • mayhem Oct 15, 2014

    I feel so bad for this child who had to live in fear every day, I'm sure. This is just horrific.

  • Kathy Sanders Oct 15, 2014
    user avatar

    If she had family and friends who knew she was in the habit of drinking and driving, especially with children in her car, shame on them for not reporting her so she would have had to get help.

  • winemaker81 Oct 15, 2014

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    Wrong. Those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it. Read up on Prohibition. It solved nothing, made criminals of honest citizens, and produced organized crime.

    News flash -- laws do not prevent crime. Laws do NOT stop criminals from being criminals. Laws provide a mechanism for defining crimes for enforcement and allocating punishment. AFTER the crime is committed.

    News flash 2 -- We cannot stop DUI from occurring.

    What can we do?

    We can change the laws to help prevent DUI from *reoccurring*. Eliminate plea bargaining in DUI cases. Jack up punishment for repeat offenders. Reclassify injuries that occur as a result of DUI as attempted murder, and classify deaths as 1st degree murder.

  • shd-be-doing-something-else Oct 15, 2014

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    Most likely, she didn't "blow" a 0.32 at the scene of the accident. She was probably taken to the hospital where a toxicology screen was administered, and that showed her BAC to be 0.32. There is no doubt in my mind that eventually she will be charged with DUI, along with having the misdemeanor death by vehicle upgraded to a more serious charge.

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