A tragic accident that killed a beloved Virginia teacher is being investigated by Virginia State Police. Earlier this month, a driver crossed the median on U.S. 220 and caused a head-on collision with another driver, killing her. The driver who crossed the median was driving a 2012 Dodge Journey southbound on U.S. 220 and hit the northbound driver of a 2015 Nissan Versa near Virginia 919.

The victim, age 49, had been a long-time third-grade teacher at a nearby elementary school and lived in Roanoke. The driver of the Dodge Journey received medical treatment at a local hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.

A search warrant has been filed in Franklin County as part of the investigation into this deadly car collision. The search warrant indicates that a police trooper smelled alcohol inside the surviving driver’s car and found an almost empty box of white zinfandel wine on the passenger floorboard of that driver’s car. Furthermore, police officers found a pill separator in the car with six unidentified pills inside, as well as a blue plastic cup with what was characterized as a “sticky” residue inside. According to the investigating trooper, the driver reported that she was taking medication and had consumed two glasses of wine prior to the accident. She also reported that she did not know how the accident occurred.

This potentially negligent driver has left a family without a loved one, and a classroom without a teacher. It is a terrible tragedy for the victim and her family as we approach the holiday season. It remains to be seen whether the driver responsible for the crash will be held accountable for this serious auto accident.

Source: The Roanoke Times, “Search warrant: Pills, wine box found after accident that killed Rocky Mount teacher,” Tiffany Stevens, Nov. 17, 2015