Poughkeepsie police are investigating a fatal crash near the Arterial that left two people dead and several others injured. Our John Wagner has more on the ongoing investigation.
POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- A rush hour police chase on Poughkeepsie's main thoroughfare ended on impact as a car weaving in and out of traffic evaded the cops, accelerated through the Worrall Avenue red light, and slammed into an innocent family.
"I heard a siren, a screech, and a loud bang," said Phil Staniscia, who lives on the corner of Worrall Avenue and the East Bound Arterial, next to the accident.
"People's lives are being taken and something needs to be done, and soon," said Poughkeepsie resident Ruth Spence.
Police say the two front occupants of the overturned car were killed. Two children sat in the back seat and are being treated at St. Francis Hospital. The driver and two occupants of the evading car were taken into custody and sent to St. Francis for their injuries.
"We hear the cop cars and the police, and all that, all the time," said Poughkeepsie resident Ruby Fingar, an identical twin to Ruth Spence, who were both near the accident. "The crime rate is really picking up."
Nearby residents say the intersection is no stranger to accidents and they aren't surprised at all. But to see a car flipped, and mangled, and cops pulling their guns on the at-fault driver still felt surreal.
"It's 30 miles per hour here," said Darlene Conrad, who has lived on Worrall Avenue for fifteen years. "Why do the cars look like that, at 30 miles per hour? It's a shame."
"It was complete chaos. It looked almost like a war zone," said Ruth Spence. "I believe people should live their life to the fullest because you never know, any second, anything can happen to you."
Police will continue interviewing witnesses and will file criminal charges against the driver. The identity of the suspects and victims will be made known on Thursday.
"People running the lights, road rages on the arterial, it's a little out of control," said Darlene Conrad.
"If it's something minor, they can catch them again, whenever, because it's not worth people's lives," said Ruby Fingar, concerning a high speed chase.
City Police are asking any witnesses to give them a call at (845) 451-4147.