The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Cops, courts and fires

April 6, 2014

Edgewood officer faces felony charges after fatal accident

Man dies of injuries; pregnant wife is flown to hospital

-- — LAPEL — An Edgewood police officer faces felony charges in connection with a fatal  traffic accident between Lapel and Anderson on Sunday afternoon. A man was killed and his pregnant wife was airlifted to a hospital by medical helicopter.

The accident happened about 12:30 p.m. and involved two vehicles heading west in the 7500 block of West Indiana 32, according to a press release from Madison County Sheriff’s Department Maj. Brian Bell.

Investigators believe that a 1996 blue Buick Century driven by 22-year-old Rebecca Marie Sperry of Pendleton was struck from behind by a 2004 GMC Yukon SUV driven by 41-year-old James D. Foutch of Anderson.

According to the release and witnesses, the impact of the hit forced the Buick off the road and into a nearby utility pole. The force from the vehicle snapped the utility pole in half and brought power lines down onto the vehicle. Representatives from Duke Energy were called out to assist with the damaged lines.

Jesse Sperry, 23, Rebecca’s husband, was pronounced dead at 1:30 p.m. by Madison County Coroner Marian Dunnichay. An autopsy will be performed today.

Foutch is an officer with the Edgewood Police Department and was off-duty at the time of the accident. About 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Foutch was arrested and booked into the Madison County Jail in a warrantless arrest. He was held on $20,000 bond.

According to Bell, Foutch faces a charge of driving while intoxicated causing death, a Class B felony. 

Investigators believe Foutch had prescription pills in his system, but neither Bell nor Madison County Sheriff Ron Richardson was able to elaborate on what substance was involved. Authorities have put a 72-hour hold on Foutch’s charges as investigators gather more information.

Rescue crews from Madison County Sheriff’s Department, Lapel Police Department, Edgewood Police Department, Lapel Fire Department, Lapel Ambulance, Edgewood Fire Department, Edgewood Ambulance and Seals Ambulance also assisted and helped to extricate Sperry from the badly damaged vehicle.

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