LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — A woman fleeing Winchester police late Wednesday went the wrong way down Interstate Highway 75 and caused a fiery crash that killed three people, officials said.
Lexington police spokeswoman Brenna Angel said 42-year-old Tammy Rodriguez was driving a Ford F-150 truck south in the northbound lanes of I-75 after making a U-turn when she struck two vehicles.
Angel said the truck first hit a Chevrolet Sonic head-on, then slammed into a Jeep Cherokee causing the jeep to flip.
Officials said one passenger in Rodriguez's truck and two in the Sonic were killed.
The Fayette County Coroner's office said 35-year-old Debbie Lynn Bevins of Pikeville -- the passenger in Rodriguez's truck -- was pronounced dead at the scene. Another passenger was taken to an area hospital.
The coroner identified the victims in the Sonic as 26-year-old driver Taylor Blevins and 20-year-old passenger Caitlyn Bailey. Both also were pronounced dead at the scene.
Angel said the driver of the Cherokee was hurt but the injuries did not appear to be life-threatening.
Police charged Rodriguez with driving under the influence and without an operator's license.
Angel referred questions about the pursuit to Winchester police.
Winchester Police have confirmed with LEX 18 that they were pursuing the Ford truck because a Sheriff's Deputy had witnessed it speeding and swerving across three different lanes. A Winchester officer joined in and tried to pull the vehicle over. The truck did not pull over.
An accident reconstruction team was working at the scene for hours.
The crash comes just a day after a semi fire shut down I-64 for hours just past the northern split.
Court records found online at kycourts.net indicate a history of arrests for Rodriguez. She was charged with driving under the influence in Pike County in 2003, 2005, and 2006, according to court documents.
In 2010, Rodriguez, also known as Tammy Bevins, "ran off the right shoulder in the grass and then stopped in the middle of the road," on I-64 in Shelby County, court records state.
Documents also list other charges, including reckless driving and prostitution.