Wrong way driver hits and kills mother of 3 while fleeing police

Family of woman killed by wrong way driver speaks out in wake of tragedy

EUCLID, Ohio (WOIO) - A woman tragically lost her life when police say a criminal smashed right into her car during a high speed chase.

Police dash camera video shows the deadly head-on crash that killed the mother of three.

Absolutely heartbreaking-- a mother of three lost her life after a criminal slammed right into her car.

Posted by Hannah Catlett on Thursday, October 24, 2019

Sunde Smith can hardly talk through her tears.

“My mother was a very beautiful person: quick witted, very funny, very loving, very compassionate,” Smith said.

Smith says her mother, Johnell Yvonne Smith, called her on her way home from work Wednesday night.

“I said ‘love you, be safe.' She said ‘OK, love you too,’ and we hung up. And she just never came home," Smith said.

The wrong way driver was leading police on a high speed chase, when he swerved and hit Yvonne head on.

“He just hit her. He hit her. He hit her, because he was doing wrong and didn’t want to get caught,” Smith said.

"He hit her because he was doing wrong and didn't want to get caught... He took her life." The daughter of the woman killed on I-90 overnight just sat down with me to talk about the person her mother was. She was hit by a man driving the wrong way on the highway, while fleeing police.

Posted by Hannah Catlett on Thursday, October 24, 2019

Troopers say they were pursuing 28-year-old Vernon Hayes Jr., because he was speeding down I-90.

Hayes refused to pull over. instead pulling a U-turn around the Euclid Avenue exit.

“You took her away from family and friends and coworkers and grand kids and future grandkids, all because you didn’t want to do what you should have been doing, which was stopping that car when you were wrong,” Smith said. “I want people to know I love my mother. I love her now. I love her forever. I love her for the rest of my days.”

Hayes also died in the crash.

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