Pedestrian Killed in Early Morning Calcasieu Parish Crash

Published 1:07 pm Monday, November 5, 2018

PRESS RELEASE — Lake Charles – Shortly after 5:00 am on November 5, 2018, Louisiana State Police Troop D began investigating a fatal crash involving a pedestrian on LA Hwy 3020 near Goodman Road in Calcasieu Parish. The crash involved an on-duty deputy with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office, and took the life of 31-year-old Jessie J. Blanchard of Iowa, LA.

The initial investigation by State Police revealed that the crash occurred as 23-year-old Craig Guillory Jr. of Lake Charles was traveling eastbound on LA Hwy 3020 in a fully marked Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office 2018 Ford Explorer. At the same time, Blanchard (who was wearing dark colored clothing) was walking near the center line in the eastbound lane of LA Hwy 3020. Guillory was unable to avoid Blanchard, and as a result the Explorer struck Blanchard as he was walking in the roadway.
Blanchard suffered serious injuries as a result of the crash. He was transported from the scene to Lake Charles Memorial Hospital where he later succumbed to those injuries. Impairment on his part is unknown at this time, and standard toxicology tests are pending. Guillory was properly restrained and was not injured in the crash. Impairment on his part is not suspected; however, he submitted to a chemical test to determine impairment, the results of which are pending. Heavy fog may have been a factor, and this crash remains under investigation.
Troopers urge pedestrians to pay close attention to their surroundings while on the roadway. Louisiana law (LRS 32:216) states that when practicable pedestrians should walk only on the left side of the highway or its shoulder, facing traffic. Simple precautions such as wearing reflective materials, avoiding distractions, and walking a safe distance from travel lanes while facing oncoming traffic could help prevent many pedestrian related crashes.