New details emerge in police chase, fatal crash in Tuscaloosa
New details have emerged in the investigation into Tuesday night's police chase that ended with a fatal crash that killed a Tuscaloosa man and injured a police officer.
James Thomas Champion, 30, was attempting to flee officers on McFarland Boulevard (Highway 82) when a Tuscaloosa police cruiser, traveling in the opposite direction, crossed the median, striking the suspect's vehicle head on. A passenger in the suspect's vehicle, 29-year-old Ronald Gilbert "Peanut" Hoover, was ejected and pronounced deceased at the scene.
Two other occupants in Champion's SUV and a Tuscaloosa police officer were injured in the crash and transported to DCH for treatment.
Champion was arrested and charged with felony eluding, leaving the scene of an accident and a probation violation. He is being held in the Tuscaloosa County Jail without bond.
Sources tell ABC 33/40 that a report of the suspects being involved in a burglary prompted police to initiate the chase, but it was later learned that the report was false.
Alabama State Troopers are investigating the accident.
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