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Trooper: Greene County teacher didn't brake in fatal crash

Published On: Feb 08 2014 08:02:56 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 10 2014 06:42:42 PM CST
GREENE COUNTY -

Investigators said a West Greene Elementary School teacher didn't brake or try to turn when she crashed into a ditch Friday evening, killing her.

According to the Highway Patrol, 38-year-old Patricia McLaughlin was not speeding when her car went off the side of Highway 903 near Snow Hill Friday.

McLaughlin was on her way back from a gym in Snow Hill when she crashed on the right side of the road at about 5:30 p.m. Friday, said troopers. Her car traveled for possibly 30 to 40 yards before coming to a stop. The person who lives near where the car crashed said the vehicle looked like it was in bad shape.

An autopsy is being conducted on McLaughlin to see if the crash was caused by a medical problem.

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An elementary school teacher was killed in a vehicle crash Friday night in Greene County.

Troopers say the driver, Patricia McLaughlin,38, was driving eastbound on Highway 903 near Snow Hill when she went off the road, hit a brick column, and rolled the vehicle several times.

McLaughlin, who was a second grade teacher at West Greene Elementary School, was killed in the wreck.

Troopers say the cause of the crash was inattention, and that alcohol was not a factor.

The Greene County schools superintendent, Dan Miller, says, "The Greene County Schools family is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Mrs. McLaughlin.  She taught for many years at Greene Central High School, Snow Hill Primary School, and at West Greene Elementary School. She was a valued teacher, colleague, and friend to many."

Dr. Miller says the principal of West Greene Elementary, JoAnn Pennington, spent the morning calling the parents of the children in McLaughlin's classroom to let them know what happened. 

He says the Greene County Schools' crisis team will provide additional school counselors and support staff at the school on Monday morning to assist with grief counseling.