Witness: Speeding driver ignores red light, crashing into family
JONESBORO, Ark. – Amy Beckett was struggling to maintain her composure Monday as her daughter clung to life from critical injuries sustained in a traffic accident Sunday morning in Jonesboro. Doctors have not been able to tell the worried mother if her daughter will survive.
“They don’t know,” Beckett said. “They just don’t know.”
Beckett spoke with NEA Report over the phone while she stood in the parking garage at Regional Medical Center (The Med) in Memphis. Beckett’s daughter, Leah Webster, 24, was critically injured in a wreck at Johnson Avenue and Patrick Street in Jonesboro almost exactly 24-hours prior to our conversation. She has three severe pelvic fractures, a broken leg, broken hip, a lacerated kidney, a lacerated spleen, and many other potential health problems from the traumatic wreck.
“They’ve got to do surgery to repair her pelvis but it’s a dangerous surgery,” Beckett said. “They can’t control the bleeding as easily during pelvic surgeries as they would normally be able to. If she can get through the surgery, then she has the risk of infection.”
The crash happened sometime before 11:30 AM. Inside of Webster’s car were her wife, Christina, and a one-year-old baby. Christina was said to have sustained a severe concussion but is “okay.” Stunningly, the baby was completely unharmed.
A witness contacted NEA Report with more details while asking us not to publish her name. She said the driver of the white truck was fine but taken to the hospital as a precaution. After sharing the name of the witness we aren’t publishing with Leah’s mother, she recognized her immediately.
“She’s the one who pulled my grand baby out of the wrecked car,” Beckett said.
The witness said the white truck was speeding when it ran the red light, crashing into Webster’s brown car.
“The car is just demolished,” Beckett described. “The driver’s side door was sitting in her lap. The fire fighters had to cut the door out of her lap to get her out of the car.”
As Beckett prays that her daughter will live through the week, she also hopes witnesses who may have seen the incident will come forward. NEA Report has already assisted in placing one witness, mentioned above, in touch with the family. Beckett hoped Monday more would be able to describe what they saw.
“I had to actually go down Patrick to get to the hospital and stopped and talked to a police officer,” Beckett said. “As I was speaking with him, the driver of the white truck, they patted him down and placed him in handcuffs and put him in the car. But I haven’t heard anything else.”
NEA Report reached out to media contact Sgt. Lyle Waterworth with Jonesboro Police Department. No criminal incident report was filed on the matter, he said. He was looking more information and planned to update a reporter later Monday. This story will be updated with additional information when it is made available.
This is video of the aftermath posted to Facebook Live:
Wednesday, January 23 – 7:30 AM – Update
Leah’s mom, Amy Beckett, has stayed in touch and said surgery was planned for Leah on Tuesday. Last minute, doctors decided to wait until today, she said, due to blood pressure worries.
The hope is for good news to come later Wednesday.
One of the stories from the devastating wreck which Beckett wanted to be told was of a nearby cellphone store owner, Asmar Eid. Beckett said he was able to reach out to her with video of everything.
Helping clarify an earlier mistaken detail, Beckett said Eid pulled her grandson out of the wreckage before the female witness arrived and held the child.
“Police say he made the first 911 call,” Beckett said. “He said the car was so full of smoke, you couldn’t see my grandson. Something told him to check the backseat. This man saved his life. I’m beyond grateful for him and the young woman who came along later.”
Beckett also said after our initial report, she found the driver of the truck – Cody Ishmael.
“I have been in contact with him and he is taking full responsibility for what he did,” Beckett said. “He was not arrested. My grandson was placed in the last ambulance and Cody was transported to the hospital in a police car. He has minor bumps and bruises.”
The hope is that Beckett’s daughter is able to recover as comfortably as possible following today’s planned surgery.
“She’s in a lot of pain and still struggling with her blood pressure.”