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Johnston Co. DWI crash victim recovering from serious injuries

Posted January 19, 2015

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— Katie Bennett is lucky to have survived a crash that left her Dodge Neon crumpled and crushed.

Authorities say the 19-year-old was hit by a drunken driver on U.S. Highway 70 in Princeton in Johnston County Sunday morning.

Five people were injured – Bennett the most seriously.

"She has a broken collarbone, a concussion," Bennett's aunt, Emily Taylor, said Monday. "They had to dig glass out of her mouth when she went to the ER, and she has torn ligaments in her knee."

Taylor says the teen is home from the hospital but still too shaken to speak publicly about the ordeal.

"She was pinned inside the car and had to be cut out of her vehicle," Taylor said.

Bennett is a full-time student who is also working two jobs to pursue her dream of becoming a nurse.

Taylor says Bennett was on her way to take an exam – as part of training she is undergoing to become an emergency medical technician – when she was hit.

The wreck also shook up Bennett's mother, who works at the Johnston County 911 dispatch center. She got a phone call from coworkers Sunday telling her that her daughter had been in an accident.

"She was able to make it down the street to where the accident was in time and had to watch them cut Katie out of the car," Taylor said. "That's a hard thing for any mom to see."

The driver who hit Bennett – Rodney Goods, 37 – is charged with driving while impaired, running a red light and driving with a revoked license.

Taylor says that, in addition to recovering from the wreck, her niece is worried that she will be left financially responsible for the medical bills that are already piling up. Bennett does not have health insurance and only has liability insurance on her car.

That's why the family, as well as friends, are pitching in to raise money for medical and other expenses.

"We're trying to make sure she can focus on healing physically, and she doesn't have to worry about the financial aspects," Taylor said.


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  • Tommy Frieda Holloman Jan 20, 2015
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    Did he have any insurance at all? She can get something from her unisured motorist part of her liability although I'm sure it won't be nearly enough to cover the bills..Our prayers for her...

  • jlkcarter80 Jan 20, 2015

    This guy is a habitual offender. He's had his license revoked at least 5 times since 1997. Not to mention, the number of victims & cost of property damage from this one accident. His bond started out at $15k on Saturday & has increased as the investigation has continued. I'm fairly certain the girl that hit the motorcycle last night will be the same.

    As far as the bankruptcy comment, I don't see that as an option for a 19 yr old working 2 jobs, putting herself through school, & interning as an EMT in her spare time. How many people this age are that responsible?

  • ncsuweatherboy Jan 19, 2015

    I sincerely she makes a quick and full recovery but I find it interesting the guy who committed this terrible crash had a bad so much higher than the woman in Wake County who was drunk and going over 100mph when she mowed down and killed someone.

  • ncsuweatherboy Jan 19, 2015

    Maybe WRAL will do a story on the black man killed in Wake by a white woman in a hit-and-run. It's also interesting that the black man who hit this woman who survived received bail almost 3x what the white woman who killed the guy in Wake got.

  • 68_dodge_polara Jan 19, 2015

    "That's why the family, as well as friends, are pitching in to raise money for medical and other expenses."

    They'll never raise enough money to cover those medical bills. She just needs to declare bankruptcy after all the bills have come in.

  • AnonyMouseLOL Jan 19, 2015

    Though this would never stop the problem of the selfish deciding to drink and drive anyway (because of friends and relatives who will let them use their vehicle), those with a record of doing it more than once should not be allowed to ever own a vehicle again that isn't equipped with a breath analyzer attached to the ignition switch, that they have to blow into to get the vehicle to start, that will only start if their breath is alcohol free.