for immediate release
June 4, 2002

N E W S R E L E A S E

(UPDATING WITH FATALITY)

The Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office is investigating a fatal traffic crash in Mary Esther early this morning (Tuesday morning). Linda M. Davenport, age 44 (12-13-57), of 413 Nordic Lane, Fort Walton Beach, died this afternoon (Tuesday afternoon), approximately 15 hours after the crash.

Davenport, westbound on Hollywood Boulevard in a 2001 Mazda Protege, apparently ran the flashing red light at Mary Esther Boulevard. Her car was struck broadside by a 1994 Honda Accord, southbound on Mary Esther Boulevard. Davenport's vehicle continued after the impact, circling around to strike from behind a 2001 Nissan Pathfinder SUV that was stopped at the flashing red light for eastbound Hollywood Boulevard traffic on the other side of the intersection.

Davenport, who did not appear to have been wearing a seatbelt, received major head and neck injuries, and was transported by Okaloosa County Emergancy Medical Services to Fort Walton Beach Medical Center.

The other two drivers, Zachary G. Whitman, age 19, of Navarre; and Mandy Hudspeth, age 24, of Fort Walton Beach, both wearing seatbelts, were not injured. Whitman was driving the southbound Honda; Hudspeth was operating the Nissan stopped at the eastbound flashing red light.

The crash happened a few minutes after midnight this morning (Tuesday morning).

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for more information contact Rick Hord, Public Information Officer

(850) 651-7420

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