Local News

Three killed in wrong-way crash on I-85

Posted July 19, 2015 8:05 a.m. EDT
Updated July 20, 2015 10:14 a.m. EDT

— Three people were killed early Sunday in a head-on collision on Interstate 85 in Orange County, authorities said.

The crash occurred shortly after 3 a.m. near the split of I-85 and Interstate 40.

The North Carolina State Highway Patrol said Chandler Michael Kania, 20, of Asheboro, was driving north in the southbound lanes when his Jeep Wrangler collided with a Suzuki driven by Felecia Harris, 49, of Charlotte.

Harris and two of her three passengers were killed. One of the other two victims was identified as 6-year-old Janiece Smith, from Brooklyn, N.Y. The third victim has not yet been identified.

A second child seated in the back of Harris' vehicle was taken to UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill. The Highway Patrol said the child was seriously injured and was still being treated Sunday night.

Kania, a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, also was taken to UNC Hospitals for treatment on non-life-threatening injuries.

Troopers said alcohol appears to be a factor in the crash, but no charges have been filed.

WRAL News incorrectly reported previously that Harris was a part-time instructor at UNC-Charlotte.

The crash closed two southbound lanes near mile marker 163 for several hours while the Highway Patrol investigated and cleared the wreckage.