Questions surround fatal crash

Published 10:02 am Tuesday, January 27, 2009

MURFREESBORO – Was an early morning auto crash that left two people dead here Friday connected to a domestic situation?

That’s a question the North Carolina State Highway Patrol wants answered.

Earnest Lee Williams, 25, and 24-year-old Shannon Robinson, both of Seaboard, lost their lives as the result of a single-vehicle wreck that occurred at 3:43 a.m. on Jan. 23 along a stretch of US 158/258 Business.

According to a report filed by NCHP Trooper M.T. Bryan, Williams was operating a 2000 Plymouth passenger car traveling west on US 158/258 Business. Robinson was a front seat passenger.

After the vehicle passed the Food Lion Shopping Center (traveling towards the bypass), it ran off the left side of the road and struck a culvert. Following impact with the culvert, both Williams and Robinson were ejected from the vehicle.

Williams died at the scene. Robinson was airlifted by EastCare to Pitt County Memorial Hospital in Greenville where she died later on Friday.

However, the story doesn’t end there, according to NCHP Troop A, District II First Sgt. Todd Lane.

“The information we have obtained thus far leads us to believe that there was an apparent domestic altercation between Mr. Williams and Miss Robinson, who are allegedly boyfriend and girlfriend, prior to the fatal accident,” Lane said.

He continued, “That apparent altercation ended with Miss Robinson, who was standing in front of a business on Main Street in Murfreesboro, being forced into the vehicle by Mr. Williams. He was seen driving away, heading west, at a speed in excess of the posted limit as well as not operating the headlights on the vehicle.”

First Sgt. Lane said his office is further investigating the chain of events that occurred prior to the accident. Those with information are urged to contact Trooper Bryan at the NCHP’s Ahoskie office (252-332-6800).