A driver was killed and his passenger injured Saturday after attempts to evade police led to a crash into a tree, authorities said.
Michael P. Lawrence, 32, of Mena was fleeing south on County Road 95 in Polk County about 10:40 p.m. when he tried to negotiate a right-hand curve, state police said. That’s when his 1993 Chevy pickup ran off the road and hit a tree, state police wrote in a preliminary accident report.
The pickup then came to rest in a ditch on the northbound side of the road, facing south, about three-tenths of a mile south of Arkansas 8, authorities said.
Lawrence and passenger Danielle Smith, 21, of Hatfield were taken to Mercy Hospital in Hot Springs.
Lawrence was pronounced dead there by Garland County Coroner Stuart Smedly.
Smith was listed in the report as injured, but there was no immediate word on her condition.
The weather was clear and the road was dry at the time of the accident, the state police said.
Lawrence was the 503rd person to die in person to die in a traffic accident in Arkansas so far this year, according to preliminary figures.