Driver, pursued by police, dies after killing woman in I-64 crash

Two people are dead after a wrong-way driver caused a fatal crash on the Interstate 64 in Albemarle County early Sunday morning, according to police.

Virginia State Police were alerted to a green pickup truck driving recklessly in the westbound lanes of the interstate just after 6 a.m. When officers pursued the vehicle, the driver — identified by police as Winston J. Smith II, 32, of Staunton — crossed the median, into the eastbound lanes, and drove the wrong way.

Smith’s Isuzu pickup truck struck a Hyundai sedan driving eastbound near mile marker 114.

The head-on collision caused both vehicles to strike a Ford F-150 pickup truck, according to a statement from police.

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Smith and the driver of the Hyundai sedan, Bethany M. Franklin, 30, of Troutville, both died at the scene.

Both were wearing seatbelts.

The driver of the Ford F-150, identified only as an adult male, was transported to the University of Virginia Medical Center for minor injuries.

Police are still investigating the crash at this time.

The deaths are the second and third in the area under investigation by police in two days. On Saturday, a woman was found dead on U.S.

250 near the Old Ivy Road bridge. Police have not identified her publicly.

On July 11, police said Rodney D.

Burnett, 46, of Indiana, stabbed his ex-girlfriend with a folding knife while she was driving on I-64 near mile marker 101 in Albemarle County. The 46-year-old Fishersville woman was taken to the UVa Medical Center in critical condition, having suffered stab wounds to her neck and abdomen, according to a search warrant. Burnett currently is being held at the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail on a charge of malicious wounding.


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