Darren Spurlock

Innocent Victim of Pursuit

Huntsville, AL, Police say the chase began when drug agents saw two women in a car engaged in what they believe to be a drug exchange. The officers approached the women, and the driver sped off.


May 31, 2009

HUNTSVILLE, AL—A year after a high speed chase resulted in a deadly wreck on Redstone Arsenal, several North Alabama cities and counties are facing a civil lawsuit brought on by the victim's widow.

Three-hundred sixty-five days after NASA Engineer Darren Spurlock was killed by a woman who struck his car while she was eluding police, Spurlock's family, friends and colleagues on Redstone Arsenal continue to seek closure.

"The entire team Redstone family, Army and NASA, was affected by that event and again our prayers and thoughts go out to Mrs. Spurlock and her family members," said Dan O'Boyle of Redstone Arsenal.

The chase traveled on the parkway but ended on the arsenal after Cox blew through Gate One-- driving six miles on base until striking Spurlock's vehicle.

Since the crash, arsenal leaders have enhanced security measures, hoping to prevent another senseless tragedy.

"When the funding came in place, we acted promptly to initiate this design, this construction to further protect Team Redstone," O'Boyle said.

Valorie Cox [the fleeing driver] is serving a 30-year prison term for her role in Spurlock's death. But Kelly Spurlock said Cox isn't the only one responsible.

Thursday, attorney William Atkinson of Winfield filed a civil lawsuit on behalf of Spurlock's widow, naming three individuals, the cities of Huntsville, Madison, Decatur, and Madison and Morgan counties as defendants.

The municipalities named contribute officers to STAC—the agency that was involved in the chase.

"The police who initiated this, we think the circumstances will show a needless high-speed chase, have not yet answered to anyone and we seek to do that in this civil action," Atkinson said.

Atkinson said his client is not suing for a specific amount. He said he'd like to leave it up to a jury to determine an appropriate amount of restitution.

Once served, the defendants will have 30 days to answer to the lawsuit.

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