Usual Suspect Arrested In Horrific Rock Creek Parkway Crash Of A Couple Of Months Ago
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Earlier: Who Were The Occupants Of The Lexus SUV That Killed 3 On Rock Creek Parkway On March 15? Police Aren’t Saying

A few weeks ago, I posted about a horrific car crash on the Rock Creek Parkway in Washington, D.C. in March that killed three immigrants in a Lyft car who were minding their own business when a Lexus going 100 mph hurtled into their side of the road.

The cops have now finally arrested the driver, Nakita Marie Walker, and charged her with second degree murder. No mugshot has been released. Washington, D.C. has had a policy since 1970 of not releasing mugshots due to fear of “prejudice.” From the single photo floating around online harvested from social media, it looks like a Usual Suspect, female version (not some well-connected D.C. insider as I had speculated like, say, the Ukrainian ambassador or a Biden cabinet secretary). But I won’t link to the picture yet because there remains a chance it could be a different, innocent person. [ note: The image above is not from social media, but someone’s camera phone shot of NBC Washington’s coverage. The woman in the wheelchair is the accused.]

From the DCist: Driver With History Of DUI Charged With Murder In Rock Creek Parkway Crash That Left Three Dead

Martin Austermuhle, Jordan Pascale

A D.C. woman with a history of driving under the influence has been charged with three counts of second-degree murder for a high-speed crash on Rock Creek Parkway in mid-March that killed three people in another car—an incident that police allege occurred under the influence of alcohol.

The U.S. Park Police announced Monday afternoon that D.C. resident Nakita Marie Walker, 43, had been arrested for the early-morning March 15 crash,…

According to Park Police reports and details in an arrest warrant filed in D.C. Superior Court last week, police pulled Walker over after allegedly seeing her run a red light at Independence Avenue and 17th Street SW. During the stop, a police officers [sic] allegedly saw the one passenger in the car drinking out of a solo cup, and packaging for marijuana. Walker fled the stop “at a high rate of speed” northbound on the parkway, crashing into Kamara’s car less than two minutes later.

According to witnesses interviewed by police, the Lexus that Walker was allegedly driving crossed the double-yellow center line before hitting Kamara’s car. Data from the Lexus had the car topping out at 100 miles an hour, four times the legal speed limit on Rock Creek Parkway.

Police say in the warrant that Walker and her passenger had allegedly been drinking while watching a movie earlier that evening, and later purchased a bottle of liquor that was found in the car partially consumed. In an interview with police, the passenger said Walker had not been drinking inside the car “since she was already ‘lit’ … and gets tipsy really fast.” But a urine test conducted while Walker was at the hospital allegedly found that she was legally intoxicated.

According to the D.C. court database, Walker was arrested and pleaded guilty for driving under the influence of alcohol on at least three occasions: in 2020, in 2018, and in 2015. In the two earliest incidents, Walker was sentenced to 15 days in jail, and was ordered to install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle she drove. She also had her driver’s license suspended and was ordered to complete traffic safety programs; it’s unclear whether she had regained her license since then.

Walker was also pulled over for speeding in Virginia in 2018 and 2022, according to state court records. And in the wake of the crash on Rock Creek Parkway, it was revealed that the Lexus she was driving—which police say she allegedly co-owned and had co-registered with a former husband—had accrued almost 40 traffic camera tickets in D.C. worth some $12,000 in fines in a 10-month period, almost all of them for speeding.

… According to recent reporting by The Washington Post, more than 2,100 vehicles have 40 or more outstanding tickets, with one Maryland driver having racked up 339 tickets worth $186,000 in fines.

…“She had clearly over and over and over the course of many years shown a track record for using that [driver’s] license in a way that put the public at risk of serious injury or death without any real evidence that her behavior changed,” said Councilmember Charles Allen (D-Ward 6), referring to Walker. “Until we find ways to change that motorist behavior, traffic deaths are going to persist.” …

In an interview with police on Monday, a summary of which was uploaded to the court docket on Tuesday, Walker admitted to drinking and smoking marijuana the night of the incident, but said that she did not remember the crash. She said that her passenger had ordered her to drive away from police when they were first stopped, because he was allegedly carrying an illegal gun. She also said it may not even have been her driving the car.

Granted, this is only one (spectacular) anecdote. But on this third anniversary of the Racial Reckoning, all the evidence suggests that these kinds of Deaths of Exuberance (traffic fatalities and homicides) have been going on quite a bit more since May 25, 2020.

Here are a couple of graphs I’ve done based on CDC WONDER data on causes of death, weekly since 2018 and monthly since 1999:

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