Desoto County News

UPDATE: Saturday pursuit, crash, leads to second death

Southaven Police Wednesday identified two victims have died from the Saturday morning crash on Highway 51 near Stateline Road, part of a chase by Horn Lake Police involving a stolen vehicle that entered Southaven. The crash involved several vehicles.

Dead as a result of the crash are James Charleston, age 26, and Jasmine Cooper, also age 26.

In our original report, Southaven officers were called to assist in a pursuit of a stolen vehicle by Horn Lake Police that entered Southaven on Highway 51. Police say Horn Lake officers were in the middle of pursuing the vehicle and that Southaven officers were in the process of putting down stop sticks on Highway 51 near Veterans Drive when the suspect vehicle struck other vehicles.

Police initially reported one fatality and another critically injured when the crashes occurred. Southaven Police also said their officers were not involved in the pursuit. The second victim has now died of injuries sustained in the wreck.

In Wednesday’s information, Southaven Police said various videos and witnesses have been located in its investigation and because of the continuing nature of the investigation, the department cannot release everything involved with what happened.

Police, however, did release Mississippi Department of Transportation video of the scene leading up to the wreck, as a portion of this video will shed light on how this crash occurred.  Due to the violent and devastating nature of this crash, and considering the sensitivities of the families involved, the video clip will stop prior to the actual crash event. 

The video is from the intersection of Highway 51 and Stateline Road facing south. The video shows a dark colored 2007 G35 Infiniti traveling north on Highway 51 in the southbound lane of traffic at a high rate of speed, with a Horn Lake Police Department Patrol SUV behind it.  The Infiniti loses control and impacts with oncoming traffic.

The clip is only seven seconds long but at the top of the video you can begin to see the car swerving in traffic just before the crash.

The Southaven Police Department Crash Reconstruction Team is still conducting their investigation.  At the conclusion of their investigation, the findings will be sent to the DeSoto County District Attorney’s Office for review.

The Horn Lake Police Department has not officially commented on the circumstances leading up to the crash.

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