KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Knoxville woman says she feels lucky to be alive after a man involved in a car chase with police crashed into her vehicle.
Police say the chase happened around midnight on Oct. 30. Officers found a vehicle that was taken in a carjacking a few days before. The suspect led Knoxville Police on a brief chase before crashing into another car at the intersection of 16th Street and Clinch Avenue near the University of Tennessee campus.
The person in the car that was hit was Laterria Mack.
Two weeks later, Mack is still recovering financially and emotionally.
“I had a green light and in my mind, I saw him coming but I’m thinking he was going to stop,” she said.
The suspect, 34-year-old Seayon Weston, did not stop.
“He hit me, I spun around and hit a light pole. My airbags did come out and I had looked out the window and I saw the cops,” Mack said.
After hitting Leterria, Weston took off on foot. Police ran after him. Laterria was still trapped in her mangled vehicle.
“I instantly was just screaming, ‘help me,’ and that’s when all the UT students came and tried to help me,” Mack said.
Mack says the fire department cut her out of the vehicle and she was taken to the hospital to be evaluated. What she didn’t know was this was just the beginning of a long and difficult process.
“I didn’t have any transportation,” she said. “My kids missed a whole week’s worth of school. I missed a whole week’s worth of work. I did come up on some money to go put a down payment on a car which is mind blowing because I didn’t have a car payment at first. Now I have a car payment.”
All this because she just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“I’m still angry about it just because it’s an unnecessary car payment,” Mack said. “I’m just trying to actually make up for my kid’s school days and my workdays.”
A Knoxville Police spokesperson said when something like this happens, their responsibility is to ensure that the involved parties receive the appropriate medical attention on scene and a crash report is completed. We’re told both of those things were done in this case.
According to the report, Mack complained of pain in her legs and hips and was transported to the UT Medical Center by ambulance for medical evaluation. She was also issued an accident information card with the report number and for any follow-up questions.
“I just want something done about the cost and the pain and suffering, and everything that I had to go through because I’m an innocent victim,” Mack said.
As for Seayon Weston, officers found a loaded handgun and a quantity of what is believed to be meth, heroin, ecstasy and marijuana in the vehicle. He had three prior felony convictions and was prohibited from possessing a firearm. He was charged with multiple drug and weapon charges as well as evading arrest, reckless driving and felony theft.