Tatum police: Kilgore teen dies in high-speed pursuit

TATUM, TX (KLTV) - Police have identified a teenager who died during a vehicle pursuit in Rusk County.

Tatum Police Department Chief April Rains identified the teen as Christopher Ballard, 17, of Kilgore.

About 11 p.m. Sunday, a TPD officer was on patrol when they saw a Sedan traveling south on Johnson Street at a high rate of speed, Rains said in a news release. The officer used their radar unit to check the vehicle's speed and found the driver, later identified as Ballard, was traveling at 83 mph in a 55 mph zone.

According to the release, the officer attempted to initiate a traffic stop and the driver failed to stop and continued traveling at a high rate of speed through Tatum and Rusk County.

Rusk County Sheriff's Office, the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Henderson Police Department all were notified of the pursuit.

About 4 miles from Henderson, a Rusk County Sheriff's Office deputy intercepted the vehicle, TPD said.

Ballard's vehicle crashed in a parking lot off in Henderson when his Sedan struck an unoccupied tractor trailer, police said.

He was pronounced dead at the scene by a justice of the peace.

Funeral services are set for 3 p.m. Aug. 11 with the location to be determined, according to an obituary. Burial is set to follow at Lakewood Memorial Park in Henderson. A public viewing is set from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday.

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