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Gray Watson Personal Thoughts 2003.11.02
Woman Dies in Auto Crash

[ I've copied this without permission just as a point of social commentary. Very very sad. Talking on the phone, no seatbelt, driving faster than the speed limit. Who says that natural selection does not still apply. ]

By Megan Tench, Globe Staff, 11/2/2003

A 20-year-old Abington woman died early yesterday after she lost control of her car while talking on a cellphone and crashed into the wall of a cellphone store, police said.

Authorities were investigating the accident, but it appeared Bethanie Lawton was talking on her cellphone at the time of the crash, Officer Ray Rogers of the West Bridgewater Police Department said.

"She was on her cellphone talking to a girlfriend when she told her friend, `I'm having an accident,' " said Rogers. "It appears that she lost control of the car due to inattention to the road, and she was obviously going faster than the posted 25 miles per hour speed limit."

According to police reports, it was after midnight when Lawton dropped her friend off in West Bridgewater after attending a Halloween party.

Around 1 a.m., Rogers said, a Plymouth County police officer driving on Route 106 heard an alarm sounding from inside a nearby Cingular Wireless store. When he went to investigate, Rogers said, he found Lawton's 1999 Mercury Cougar crashed through the store's brick wall.

"The girl was trapped inside the vehicle," he said.

Fire officials, along with a volunteer firefighter who is also an emergency room doctor, raced to the scene, eventually removing Lawton from the car. Lawton suffered a heart attack while in the ambulance, Rogers said.

Lawton was not wearing a safety belt, police said.

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