December 1, 2013
Lieutenant Gregg Hastings
Public Information Officer
(503) 731-3020 ext 247
Photograph link valid at least 30 days - Source: Douglas County Sheriff's Office
Law enforcement officers from California Highway Patrol (CHP), Washington State Patrol (WSP), and Oregon State Police (OSP) continue to partner Sunday during the "I-5 Challenge" to help travelers get through the Thanksgiving Holiday extended weekend with zero fatalities. One incident on Saturday afternoon is an example of how the public is helping prevent dangerous drivers from causing a tragic crash.
On November 30, 2013 at approximately 1:00 p.m., OSP dispatch received at least 8 citizen driving complaints about a green 2000 Honda Accord northbound on Interstate 5 from the Roseburg area. The citizen complaints included passing other traffic on the shoulder, following too close, and speeds in excess of 100 mph.
Two OSP Fish & Wildlife troopers set up to look for the car in the Sutherlin area and saw it traveling aggressively through other traffic at a high rate of speed. The troopers had difficulty keeping the car in sight as it continued recklessly northbound. Near milepost 144, the car was blocked in front and slowed down by a commercial truck and recreational vehicle when the troopers caught up and got it stopped without further incident.
The driver, TERRA McCORMICK, age 34, from Eugene, was immediately taken into custody. Subsequent investigation at the scene during the traffic stop led to the discovery of four syringes with a suspected heroin liquid substance.
McCORMICK was lodged in the Douglas County Jail for DUII, Reckless Driving, and Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance - Heroin. She was also cited for Refusing a Breath Test, Exceeding the Posted Speed Limit in Excess of 100 mph, Possession of an Open Container of Alcohol in Vehicle, and Driving While Suspended.
Both troopers said this was the worst driving they have witnessed in their careers and the driver would have been involved in a collision if they weren't in the area to get it stopped with the help of citizens' complaints.
During the stop, two citizens pulled over and gave statements to the troopers about the suspect's driving and how frightened they were. Other motorists slowed as they drove by the stop scene, cheering and pumping their fists in the air in appreciation for the trooper's stopping the car.
No witness names or dispatch recordings available for this release.
CHP, WSP, OSP and other law enforcement agencies continue to focus on traffic crash-causing violations that are known to be factors that often lead to tragedies and end in people not arriving safely to their destinations. Speed, aggressive and distracted driving often top the list, along with driving while impaired and failing to use safety belts and child safety seats.
You can join the effort by committing to driving safely at all times and reporting possible intoxicated or dangerous driver to 9-1-1 or your state law enforcement agency's dispatch center. In Oregon, reports along state highways and Interstate 5 can be made to OSP at 1-800-24DRUNK (1-800-243-7865).
### www.oregon.gov/OSP ###