According to a recent report by ESPN, professional tennis star Venus Williams was involved in a car crash on June 9 that eventually led to the death of the passenger of another vehicle. The fatality, revealed to be 78-year-old Jerome Barson, sustained severe head trauma in the accident. Barson passed away on June 23 as a result of the injuries.
Authorities say that Williams's 2010 Toyota Sequoia hastily entered an intersection near her home in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida before colliding with a 2016 Hyundai Accent driven by 68-year-old Linda Barson, Jerome's wife, who also sustained injuries.
The 37-year-old Williams told authorities that she had entered the six-lane intersection on a green light, but she was forced to stop due to backed-up traffic. Williams claimed she did not see the Barsons' car, and was side-swiped when she entered the opposing lane. Authorities say that Williams was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash.
Although no formal charges have been filed against Williams, the Barsons' attorney, Michael Steinger, announced on a recent episode of Good Morning America that a wrongful death lawsuit has been filed. Additionally, Steinger stated that the Barson family is in the process of acquiring additional evidence from the incident which is currently being held by police.
"At this point we are attempting to both preserve the evidence and gain access to evidence," Steinger said. "There were video cameras placed at guard houses where Ms. Williams lives, police have refused after multiple requests to turn those over to us, and we would like to see visual portrayal of the accident on those videos. They have impounded all the vehicles and have impeded our ability to do our investigation and move forward. Not sure what their reasoning is. They have refused to turn them over to us at this point."
Williams's attorney, Malcolm Cunningham, also released a statement regarding the accident. "This is an unfortunate accident and Venus expresses her deepest condolences to the family who lost a loved one," Cunningham stated. Williams herself has yet to comment publicly regarding the incident.
Venus Williams currently sits at the Number 10 seed at Wimbledon which is scheduled to begin Monday in England. As of Friday, Williams still plans on participating in the tournament.