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Kansas soldier's highway suicide attempt kills someone else

A Junction City man had already served nearly five years in the military by the time he was 22. Something was very wrong in the Kansas man's life, according to friends who told police the Fort Riley soldier was considering self-harm.

Hours after the ominous warning, the suicidal soldier survived a crash that was a fatal accident for someone else.

A state trooper on duty in Geary County spotted a Chrysler heading the wrong way on Interstate 70. A dangerous police pursuit ensued with the Chrysler headed straight for oncoming traffic at speeds of up to 100 mph.

Attempts to force the car to stop were useless, including a trooper plea by phone directly to the driver. Cars and truck drivers scattered quickly off the highway to make room for the car speeding toward them. One of the vehicles trying to avoid a head-on collision was an SUV containing three out-of-state residents.

The 53-year-old male driver veered off the interstate. The SUV flipped multiple times while rolling down an embankment. The vehicle finally came to rest upside down on an access road.

The SUV's occupants were hospitalized. The driver's medical problems were minor compared to the serious leg, back and neck injuries suffered by a 51-year-old woman passenger. The woman's 53-year-old husband died a short time after the crash. Doctors said his death was due to blunt force trauma.

The high-speed, wrong-way pursuit ended when the soldier finally gave up. The man stopped on the highway and surrendered. Murder and reckless driving charges were filed. A conviction could send the soldier to prison for more than 40 years.

Damages for injuries or wrongful deaths stem from a disregard for someone else's safety. Blame for negligence and subsequent damages are not erased by a lack of harmful intent. If have lost a loved one due to someone else's reckless or negligent behavior, contact a liability attorney to see what options you have to pursue compensation.

Source:  wibw.com, "Soldier's Failed Suicide Attempt Caused Deadly Highway Crash" Lindsey Rogers, Aug. 15, 2013

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