COLUMBIA — A rollover accident on Interstate 70 killed one woman and sent seven other people to University Hospital around 7 a.m. Wednesday, according to a news release from the Columbia Police Department.
Evonne Manor-Wilson, 49, of Sanford, Fla., was killed in the accident. She was seated in the third row on the passenger side of the 2001 Dodge Ram Van.
The accident occurred near the Stadium Boulevard exit on eastbound I-70. The van was part of a convoy of vehicles traveling from Sturgis, S.D., to Florida, according to a news release from the Columbia Fire Department. The van was the only vehicle involved in the crash.
Fire units from both the Columbia Fire Department and Boone County Fire Protection District were dispatched at 6:56 a.m. The first unit from the Columbia Fire Department arrived at the scene at 7:04 a.m, Columbia Fire Department Battalion Chief Steve Sapp said.
The driver was identified as Kevin Leeks, 50, of Leesburg, Fla. He was removed from the vehicle along with Wilson, who was pronounced dead on the scene. There were 13 total passengers. Six others had already exited by the time fire units arrived.
The remaining seven passengers were transported to University Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. They were all alert and communicating with fire and medical personnel but needed to be further examined to determine the extent of their injuries, Sapp said.
The Columbia Fire Department also transported 10 uninjured family members from other vehicles in the caravan to University Hospital.
Police said Leeks was wearing a seatbelt and that there was no evidence of alcohol involved.
The accident backed up rush-hour traffic on the highway, and Jessica Haden, public information officer for the Columbia Police Department, said both lanes were open by 9:30 a.m.
Sean Pooley, a KOMU photographer at the scene, was arrested after Sapp instructed him and a group of observers to stay north of I-70, outside of a set perimeter, Haden said.
Haden said that Pooley crossed two lanes of westbound traffic into the median. Sapp asked him again to comply, and then directed police to arrest him. He was not wearing a reflective safety vest, Haden said.
Pooley was arrested on suspicion of willfully failing to comply with the lawful order of a fire official.