HELENA-WEST HELENA-- Late last night, there was an automobile accident in the 200 Block of South 7th Street in Helena-West Helena, Arkansas. The collision was loud and could be heard for blocks. People rushed to the scene and the crowd thickened.
The vehicles involved were a green Saturn and burgundy Trailblazer. This accident developed early in the evening while the driver of the saturn was yet at work. Some miscreants stole a trailblazer from the 300 block of South Coanza street. The trailblazer is believed to have belonged to Ms. Aretha Jackson who teaches at Central High School.
At some point, around 11:00 p.m., Onstar alerted the Helena West Helena Police Department to the vehicle's location. It was stationary. Then it was moving. Then it was moving at a high rate of speed. The driver of the stolen Trailblazer is said to have "jumped" the intersection of Plaza and 7th doing about 70 miles per hour. About a block and one-half later, the accident occurred.
Mrs. Sherie Renee Bailey, wife of Terrence "Teddy" Bailey and mother of three children, born October 17, 1978, was driving the green saturn which was struck by the southbound Trailblazer. Officer Jeremy Bramlett was behind the Trailblazer. However, no details were provided on his rate of travel. The trailblazer flipped three times, according to witnesses, before coming to rest on its top (upside down) in the middle of the street in front of 227 South 7th. The green saturn came to rest against the fence in front of 220 South 7th Street.
Deputy Coroners Eugene Handley and Tommie Hunt were on the scene and made the death pronouncement.
Many people waited to see whether anyone was trapped in the Trailblazer which was crushed and upside down. Mr. Melvin Snyder and Mr. Robert Ford hooked chains to the bottom of the Trailblazer and pulled it until the vehicle once again sat upright.
State troopers, city police officers and firefighters, and paramedics thoroughly inspected the Trailblazer. However, its two occupants were no where to be found.
Witnesses said that the occupants fled the scene immediately.
As of 7:00 a.m., no one had been identified or apprehended for the theft of the vehicle or the death of Mrs. Bailey. Helena West Helena Police and Arkansas State Police are continuing their investigation at this time.