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Woman killed in fatal Fire Tower wreck was involved in wreck four hours prior


The Daily Reflector

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

A  Farmville woman killed in a fatal wreck on the evening of April 6 also was involved in a crash hours earlier, according to a State Highway Patrol crash report and the Greenville Police Department.  

Pattie Louise Gardner, 36, 3716 Ghost Hollow Road, Farmville, was driving her 2002 Chevrolet Tahoe Eastbound on U.S. 13 around 4:11 p.m. on April 6, when she drove off the shoulder of the road and struck a ditch.  Upon impact, her SUV continued through two yards and left tire impressions due to the ground being saturated from rain. She ended up getting stuck in the second yard as she was trying to get out.   

A witness saw the crash but left the scene before the trooper arrived. 

Gardner told the trooper an oncoming vehicle came into her lane which caused her to swerve off the right shoulder of the roadway. At the time of impact, Gardner’s vehicle was going 55 mph.  The speed limit for U.S. 13 is 55.  

The crash report did not list another vehicle being involved and did not specify if alcohol or drugs were involved.  

Gardner was uninjured but her vehicle sustained about $300 in estimated damages. 

Later that evening, Gardner was involved in a fatal crash near Fire Tower Road, according to Greenville Police.  

She was traveling westbound at approximately 39 mph on Fire Tower Road in her Tahoe about 8:30 p.m. when she crossed the centerline and collided head-on with an eastbound 2018 Ford Escape being driven by Sean Pumphrey, 52, of Greenville.  Pumphrey was going 45 mph at the times of the crash.  The speed limit for Fire Tower Road is 45 mph.  

Pumphrey and his passenger were transported to Vidant Medical Center and are in stable condition. Gardner was transported to Vidant Medical Center and succumbed to injuries sustained in the crash.  Gardner was a mother of three girls and her sister, Amanda Gardner, has set up an online fundraiser for the family on Facebook.  

The roadway was closed for approximately six hours while the Traffic Safety Unit Reconstruction Officers investigated the crash, police said.

Greenville Police spokeswoman Kristen Hunter said officers have not determined what caused Gardner to cross the centerline and they are awaiting alcohol and drug test results from the Pitt County Medical Examiner’s Office. Hunter also confirmed that Gardner was involved in the U.S. 13 crash earlier in the day.  

The State Highway Patrol investigated 15 other crashes between April 1 and April 7. Wrecks involving deer and other animals are not included.

Date Time Location Cause Number of vehicles Number of injuries
April 1 2:15 p.m. U.S. 264 Failed to yield right of way Two One
April 1 7:11 p.m. Stantonsburg Road Failed to yield right of way Three One
April 1 7:44 p.m. N.C. 33 Defective equipment One None
April 2 11:55 a.m. Wesley Church Road Exceed safe speed One One
April 2 5:23 p.m. N.C. 11 Failure to reduce speed Two None
April 2 11:35 p.m. Old Pactolus Road Overcorrected/oversteered One None
April 5 12:37 a.m. N.C. 43 Disregarded road markings One One
April 5 3:04 p.m. County Home Road Overcorrected/oversteered One None
April 5 4:08 p.m. Dickinson Avenue Failure to yield right of way Two None
April 5 8:29 p.m. 1539 Ashland Drive Improper backing/parking Two None
April 5 10:05 p.m. Old River Road Disregarded road markings One None
April 5 11:07 p.m. Weyerhaeuser Road Roadway debris One None
April 6 11:51 a.m. East Fire Tower Road Failure to reduce speed Two None
April 6 12:19 p.m. Davenport Farm Road Failed to yield right of way Two None
April 7 11:35 a.m. Porter Road Crossed center line One None