At approximately 6 p.m. Monday evening, the Indiana State Police responded to a crash involving five vehicles on State Road 28 near County Road 725E, which is approximately 2 miles west of the Tippecanoe County line. An officer from the Attica Police Department was the first to arrive on scene, and determined that one of the vehicles involved had caught fire. Crews from the three responding fire departments worked together to quickly extinguish the fire. EMS from both Fountain and Warren Counties, as well as West Point Fire Department, transported four injured occupants to IU Arnett and Franciscan Health East in Lafayette. Unfortunately, an occupant of one of the vehicles was pronounced dead at the scene by the Fountain County Coroner.
That person has now been identified as 59-year-old Diana L. Hanthorne of Williamsport. She was the driver and lone occupant of the Ford Edge, which was the vehicle that caught fire after the crash.
Four others were injured in the crash. They were 21-year-old Erin Grubb of Attica driving a Chevrolet Equinox; 37-year-old Douglas Hubner of West Lebanon driving a Ford F-150; 36-year-old Lacie Wheeler of Attica driving a Dodge Durango; and 60-year-old Avida Bruns of Fort Wayne driving a Mazda 3. Their specific injuries remain unknown.
Preliminary investigation by Trooper Thad Decker revealed that a black 2015 Dodge Durango had stopped in the westbound lane of SR 28, waiting for oncoming traffic to pass, to make a left turn into a driveway. A 2016 silver Chevrolet Equinox was traveling westbound, and the driver could not stop in time, rear-ending the black Durango. A black 2020 Ford Edge was also traveling westbound, and the driver swerved into the eastbound lane, colliding head-on with a white 2019 Ford F-150 pulling a box trailer, traveling eastbound. A gray Mazda 3 was also traveling eastbound, and the driver was unable to come to a stop, before colliding with the trailer that was in tow of the white F-150.
State Road 28 was closed in both directions between State Road 341 and County Road 725E for approximately four hours for investigation and clean-up.
Crash Reconstructionist from the Indiana State Police were called to the scene, and the crash remains under investigation at this time. These crashes involve a complex and thorough investigation, and take a great deal of time to complete. Once the investigation has been completed, the full report will be turned over to the Fountain County Prosecutor’s Office for review and determination of any criminal charges.