Four killed in Friday car accidents
Three teens, young mother perish in single-vehicle collisions
Four people were killed, one seriously injured, in three separate single vehicle crashes on Friday in Charles County, ac- cording to authorities.
Colin Bipat, 17, and Desmond Cooke, 17, both of Waldorf were killed in a collision in the early afternoon. The third oc- cupant, Caleb Marshall, 18, of Waldorf, remains hospitalized with serious injuries.
Akeema James, 25, of La Plata died in the hospital after crashing into a tree in the late afternoon.
Kendull B. Proctor, 18, of Waldorf crashed in the late evening and died at the scene.
Smallwood Drive West and St. Nicholas Drive
Around 12:34 p.m. on Friday, police responded to the intersection of Smallwood Drive West and St. Nicholas Drive in Waldorf for a reported accident and found that a car with three Westlake High School seniors
inside had crashed into a traffic light pole.
The driver, Bipat, and the back seat passenger, Cooke, were killed in the accident, according to a Charles County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson. Marshall, 18, the front seat passenger, was flown to the hospital with crit- ical injuries, though his condition has improved.
Witnesses told inves- tigators that the car — traveling at a high rate of speed — swerved to avoid traffic stopped at the intersection, and crashed into the pole. The collision caused the car’s engine block to separate, which then came to rest at the other end of the intersection.
Police closed the roadway from Mall Circle to St. Patrick’s Drive for about four hours while a preliminary investigation was conducted. Medical examiners were called to the scene.
The three occupants of the car were all wellliked students, expected to graduate in June, Principal Michael Meiser told the Maryland Independent. “It hit the school pretty hard to have to deal with this loss,” he said. “Both kids were really good kids that were involved, and had a good standing in the school. It’s going to hit the kids hard.”
Meiser described Cooke as a student who often had a smiling face, a happy demeanor and a good circle of friends.
Bipat, he said, was in most respects a quiet student, a good kid with a lot of friends at school. He was enrolled in Westlake’s career readiness development program, which allowed him to be released early from school to build vocational skills.
Marshall, who remains seriously injured in the hospital, had been attending the College of Southern Maryland full-time through Westlake’s college waiver program, the principal said, and had already met the high school graduation requirement.
U.S. 301 and Gillespie Circle
Around 5:40 p.m., Akeema James was traveling southbound on U.S. 301 north of Gillespie Circle with her two children, 4 and 6, when her car veered off the right side of the roadway, according to Maryland State Police. Her vehicle struck a curb, went airborne and crashed into a tree on the driver’s side.
James was trapped in- side the wreckage and had to be extricated by first responders before she was airlifted to a hos- pital, where she later suc- cumbed to her injuries a few hours later, authori- ties reported. Both chil- dren — restrained in child safety seats — survived the accident and were treated and released from the hospital. Police be- lieve the crash was caused by driver error and speed.
Angela James, her mother, spoke of her lov- ing daughter, a mother of two and the oldest of five siblings. “She was a beautiful person inside and out,” she told the Maryland Independent. “... Her personality is so bubbly. Anytime she walked in a room she lit it up. Her smile, she loved taking pictures. She was just a very vibrant per- son.”
Akeema, she said, was also very hardworking. While taking care of her children, she had been furthering her education and working full-time as a medical assistant at Righttime Medical Care in Waldorf.
St. Peter’s Church Road
Around 11:54 p.m., sheriff’s office deputies responded to the 3200 block of St. Peter’s Church Road in Waldorf for a reported crash, a press release states. Police determined that Kendull Proctor, driving alone in a Honda Accord, had been traveling southbound when he lost control of the car at a curve, left the road and crashed into a tree. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The scene of the crash early Friday afternoon at Smallwood Drive West and St. Nicholas Drive in Waldorf. The three occupants were seniors at Westlake High School; two died, and one remains in the hospital with serious injuries.
The scene of the crash on Friday in Waldorf that left two teens dead and one seriously injured.
Akeema James, 25, of La Plata crashed into a tree in the area of U.S. 301 north of Gillespie Circle and later succumbed to her injuries.