Providence, RI Auto Crash Into Building, Aug 1997


Providence, R.I. - Five people, including a woman who just celebrated her 26th birthday, died when their car slammed into a concrete building early Friday in what police called the city's deadliest crash.
The car was traveling at "highway speeds" in a 25 mph zone when it veered onto the sidewalk, severed a "no parking" sign, sideswiped a steel pole and rammed into the corner of a garage. Four died instantly or in the wreckage, the fifth about 45 minutes later at Rhode Island Hospital.
"This is the worst accident that anybody can remember in the city of Providence," Police Capt. Jack Ryan said.
The 1986 Chevrolet Caprice was reduced to twisted metal and broken glass at 1:48 a.m. at Orms and Valley Streets.
The driver was identified as ALFRED CURTIS, 20. The passengers were JEROME LAWSON, 21; NICOLE LEBLANC, who turned 26 on Thursday; JESSICA MATOS, 17; and STEPHEN GAUL, 25. All were from Providence.
Ryan said autopsies must be conducted to determine whether alcohol was a factor.

Hartford Courant Connecticut 1997-08-23