Police Say Venus Williams Not at Fault for Crash Causing Fatality

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJuly 8, 2017

US player Venus Williams serves to Japan's Naomi Osaka during their women's singles third round match on the fifth day of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFF / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE        (Photo credit should read OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)
OLI SCARFF/Getty Images

Police in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, announced Friday that Venus Williams entered an intersection legally before she was involved in a fatal car accident last month.

According to ESPN.com, police said surveillance video showed Williams "was cut off by another car, setting off a chain of events that seconds later resulted in a fatal crash with a third car."

"Based on the evidence obtained in the ongoing investigation, it has been determined the vehicle driven by Venus Williams lawfully entered the intersection on a circular green traffic signal and attempted to travel north through the intersection to BallenIsles Drive," police said in a statement, per the Palm Beach Post's Sarah Peters

Video of the crash, which resulted in the death of 78-year-old Jerome Barson, was published Friday by TMZ:

Per ESPN.com, police spokesman Maj. Paul Rogers said the video "has caused investigators to re-evaluate their original conclusion that Williams was at fault," which was the initial determination following the June 9 accident.

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According to CNN's Jill Martin and Chloe Melas, Barson's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Williams seeking unspecified damages. 

When asked about the crash following a first-round win over Elise Mertens at Wimbledon, Williams grew emotional before leaving her post-match press conference. 

"There are really no words to describe, like, how devastating and—yeah," she said, according to CNN.com. "I'm completely speechless. It's just..."

Williams, 37, is scheduled to meet Ana Konjuh in Round 4 on Monday following a third-round win over Naomi Osaka on Friday.      


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