Venus Williams will not be charged in Florida fatal accident: report

FILE PHOTO: USA's Venus Williams celebrates winning her semi final match against France's Caroline Garcia during WTA Tour Finals in Singapore
FILE PHOTO: USA's Venus Williams celebrates winning her semi final match against France's Caroline Garcia during WTA Tour Finals in Singapore on October 28, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su/File Photo

December 21, 2017

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (Reuters) – Tennis star Venus Williams will not face any criminal charges in relation to a June fatal traffic accident she was involved in near her Florida residence, the Sun-Sentinel newspaper reported on Wednesday, quoting police.

The driver of a car that struck Williams’ SUV in an intersection was also not charged, after Palm Beach Gardens police determined that neither violated the right-of-way, the newspaper reported. Palm Beach Gardens police and city clerk did not immediately respond to inquiries.

Police had initially said Williams was to blame for failing to yield the right-of-way.

But by July, Palm Beach Gardens police said video evidence had surfaced that showed that Williams entered the intersection lawfully, and that a car not involved in the collision forced Williams to stop in the intersection. The traffic light changed, and a sedan that struck Williams’ SUV had a green light.

Jerome Barson, 78, who was a passenger in a sedan that collided with the SUV Williams was driving, died 13 days after the June 9 accident. His wife, Linda Barson, 68, was driving the sedan.

The Barson family has filed a wrongful death suit against Williams. Calls to attorneys for both parties were not immediately returned on Wednesday evening.

(Reporting by Bernie Woodall in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

  • Informed

    The accident was caused by the person that aggressively turned left in front of Williams, causing her to stop while crossing the intersection, and the driver of the victim’s car that was clearly not paying attention. Williams did nothing wrong,

    • Kim Gibson

      Exactly. While I’m sorry that woman’s husband died, why was she not paying more attention to avoid the accident. Did she not see WIlliams there in the intersection? It wasn’t WIlliams fault, I’d say go after the idiot that forced her to have to stop!

  • Christopher Binkowski

    That’s good. Wasn’t her fault at all.