State police release more details about two early morning crashes on Casey Highway

News

The first crash involved a wrong-way driver and the second happened when a PennDOT truck was struck by a driver who is suspected of DUI

MAYFIELD, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A Scranton man died in a wrong-way crash in Lackawanna County overnight. 56-year-old Phillip Jones was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officials are giving more details about a second crash that happened at the same scene involving an alleged drunk driver, who is a sworn law enforcement officer.

Both crashes happened near Exit 5 on Route 6 heading east. The crashes are separate incidences.

Just before midnight Wednesday, a wrong-way driver was reported on Route 6. Moments later a caller reported a crash.

“Unfortunately ended up hitting a utility truck in the other lane causing a fatality,” said Trooper Robert Urban who is a Community Service Officer in Troop R.

The wrong-way driver, 56-year-old Phillip Jones of Scranton, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other driver was transported to Geisinger CMC for injuries.

“Where there is a fatality involved, there will be toxicology results that will ultimately tell us, whether the driver was suspected of DUI,” said Trooper Urban.

PennDOT is now handling its own investigating.

“Once state police determine where the wrong-way driver entered the highway, our crews will go out to the scene and make sure all of our signage is in place and also evaluate if it needs additional signage,” said Jessica Ruddy who is PennDOT’s District 4 Community Relations Coordinator.

As PennDOT was working to re-open the Casey Highway, a suspected drunk driver crashed through the closure, into a PennDOT truck.

“We were picking the cones up, I turned around and looked, there was a car coming at us at a very high rate of speed. I grabbed the other guy, pulled him out of the way, and she hit the back of my crew cab,” said PennDOT worker John White.

The driver 41-year-old Susan Laguzzi was taken into custody and booked. Eyewitness News has confirmed Laguzzi is an officer at Penn State Scranton.

Before state police arrived on scene Eyewitness News captured a man removing cans of “Miller Lite” from the driver’s side and placing them in the trunk of Laguzzi’s car.

“Troopers there on scene did an investigation and she was taken into custody for suspicion of driving under DUI,” said Trooper Urban.

Charges have not yet been filed in the suspected DUI crash until the toxicology report comes back. Eyewitness News reached out to Penn State Scranton for comment but has not heard back.

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