CINCINNATI — One woman is dead and a man is in critical condition after a police chase led to a crash at the intersection of West North Bend Road and Simpson Avenue on the border of Cincinnati and Springfield Township.
Around 2:13 a.m., North College Hill Police said they saw a red Dodge Charger speeding southbound on Hamilton Avenue near Galbraith Road. Police pursued the vehicle after it slammed on its brakes and then sped off down Hamilton Avenue toward West North Bend Road, but police stopped the pursuit on West North Bend Road.
Shortly after the pursuit ended, the officers located the Charger at West North Bend Road and Simpson Avenue. The car was flipped on its roof after colliding with North Bend Market, which sustained heavy damage.
North College Hill Police said the car was on fire and crews were able to cut the airbags and pry the woman and man from the vehicle. Officers performed CPR and other life-saving measures, police said.
The female, 24-year-old Timaya Smith, was pronounced dead at the scene.
It took firefighters almost an hour to pull the male, 24-year-old Ladale Robert Donaldson, from the vehicle. He was transported to University Hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Smith and Donaldson were not wearing seat belts, police said.
According to the North College Hill pursuit policy, officers "may initiate a pursuit" of a nonviolent suspect when they see a vehicle driven in a way that poses "a risk of serious physical harm" to the officers or others that requires an immediate attempt to stop it, people in the suspect vehicle should be aware they're being pursued and the driver tries to avoid being stopped by violating traffic laws.
North College Hill's policy said officers should end a pursuit if the risk of continuing appears to outweigh the risk of letting the suspect go. Like many pursuit policies in the Tri-State, North College Hill does not have a speed limit for pursuits. Officers can pursue people only for traffic violations and the pursuit can go into other communities, like Cincinnati, where police would not be authorized to pursue the same vehicle.
Excessive speed appears to be a factor in the crash, investigators said in a press release Monday. They also said impairment is a possible factor that is being investigated.
Any witnesses to this crash are being asked to contact CPD's traffic unit at 513-352-2514.
This is an ongoing investigation and will be updated once more information becomes available.
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