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Family of woman killed during alleged drag race questions whether charges fit the crime

Published: Mar. 27, 2018 at 3:05 AM CDT|Updated: Mar. 27, 2018 at 7:57 AM CDT
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Daymetra Jacobs with her sister Laquania Hopkins who was killed in a crash the evening of March...
Daymetra Jacobs with her sister Laquania Hopkins who was killed in a crash the evening of March 20 in Texarkana, Texas.(Source: Daymetra Jacobs)

TEXARKANA, TX (KSLA) - One man free on bond while police are waiting to arrest another in the wake of a fatal collision authorities say was the result of a drag race on a city street.

Now as survivors of the Denny's worker who died in the collision prepare to bury her, they question whether the charges fit the crime.

"If it was a drunk person driving and they wrecked her, he would be given manslaughter or more charges," Daymetra Jacobs said.

"But this person was sober minded and knew the consequences of what would happen if he was racing."

Jacobs' sister Laquania Hopkins died in the collision the evening of March 20 in Texarkana, Texas.

"And to know she was coming down the street to see me and I didn't get to see her, it hurts a lot," Jacobs said.

Police believe the wreck involving Hopkins' Toyota Avalon and a Ford Mustang reportedly being driven by 25-year-old Kalob Doyle was the result of Doyle and 52-year-old Gilbert Burton of Texarkana, Texas, drag racing each other down Richmond Road.

Hopkins was trying to drive across Richmond Road at Wheeler Street when Doyle's Ford Mustang ran into her driver's side door.

Gilbert Burton, 52, of Texarkana, Texas, fled without stopping his Dodge Charger but turned himself over to police Friday afternoon.

He was released on $100,000 bond after being booked on a charge of racing on roadway causing serious bodily injury or death.

The second-degree felony is punishable by 2 to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000 if convicted as charged.

Police say they have a warrant to arrest Doyle on an identical charge.

Investigators say he will be arrested once he is released from Christus St. Michael Hospital.

"This is something really stupid for these guys to have done," Texarkana, Texas, police spokesman Shawn Vaughn said.

Investigators still are trying to determine how fast the men were driving.

At the least, Vaughn said, it was considerably higher than the posted speed limit.

"Anytime you are driving those speeds on a city street, quite honestly, you are asking for something bad to happen.

"And, unfortunately in this case, something tragic happened."

Investigators still are asking to be contacted by anyone who saw the collision or may have other relevant information. The telephone number is (903) 798-3116.

"I want my sister to get the justice that she deserves like everybody else would want the justice they deserve if it was their family member," Jacobs said.

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