Report details crash that resulted in Van Zandt Co. deputy's manslaughter charge

Report details crash that resulted in Van Zandt Co. deputy's manslaughter charge
Lena Pettiet (Source: Facebook)
Lena Pettiet (Source: Facebook)

VAN ZANDT COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - A Van Zandt County deputy has been charged in connection with a wreck that caused the death of an East Texas woman, according to judicial records.

Mary Lena Pettiet died in May from injuries received in a February crash, her family says, after spending several months on life support. Pettiet was injured in a two-vehicle crash at the intersection of Highway 64 and Highway 243 in Canton involving a Van Zandt County deputy.

According to the investigator's report, Deputy Emily Ann Grubbs was driving a marked police vehicle, which had its emergency lights and sirens activated. She was traveling eastbound on 64 to assist another deputy who was checking on an alarm call.

The report states that Pettiet's vehicle, a white 2012 Nissan Maxima, had a green light and was attempting to turn westbound onto Highway 64 from Highway 243. 

Deputy Grubbs failed to use due caution, the report states, while entering the intersection of the two highways, which displayed a red light. Grubbs disregarded the red light and the front of her vehicle crashed into the  driver's side of Pettiet's car, the report goes on to say. Both vehicles then traveled northeast, and came to rest in a private lot.

At the time of the collision, a witness said the deputy had her siren and emergency lights on while approaching the intersection. The witness said they saw the deputy's SUV t-bone Pettiet's car in the intersection.

Grubbs was charged with manslaughter on June 24. She was released the same day on $5,000 bond.

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