73ºF

Families file lawsuit after semi-truck crash kills young couple on I-95

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The father of a young woman killed in a semi-truck crash on Interstate 95 earlier this month has a message for all truck drivers — slow down and be careful.

“I never want to see this happen to anyone else again. It was senseless, and it never needs to happen again,” said James Krajewski.

Hannah Krajewski, 21, and Devaughn Gresham, 23, were killed when a semi-truck slammed into them on I-95 near Lem Turner. It’s an area of the interstate that’s been under construction for months.

A wrongful death lawsuit was filed Wednesday on behalf of Krajewski and Gresham.

The car driven by Hannah Krajewski the night of the deadly crash that claimed her life and that of Devaughn Gresham.
The car driven by Hannah Krajewski the night of the deadly crash that claimed her life and that of Devaughn Gresham. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

Krajewski and Gresham were heading into Jacksonville for a date night about 10 minutes north of downtown when the semi-truck rounded the curve at the Lem Turner exit, lost control, hit the center median and slammed into the Kia Optima, driving it across the highway and into the guardrail.

The mangled car now sits in a Jacksonville warehouse.

“This is the driver’s door right here. It shows you the power, the speed, and the force that an out of control tractor-trailer has and the death that it can cause,” attorney Curry Pajcic said as he showed News4Jax what’s left of the car.

The crash report from FHP has limited information but it says that charges are pending on the outcome of the investigation.

“The rules are the truck driver has to slow down and use extreme caution in weather, in the rain, on wet roads. The rules are you have to slow down in construction zones," Pajcic said.

Pajcic said the semi-truck driver was going at least 70 miles-per-hour, which is 10-miles-per-hour over the speed limit.

“We want people to see this because this is what tractor-trailers do when truck drivers drive out of control, when they drive too fast for conditions, it causes devastating, deadly damage," said Pajcic. "A life is not worth a delivery.”

After speaking with their families, News4Jax learned that Gresham, or “DJ” as he was known to friends and family, graduated from Robert E. Lee High School and Krajewski graduated from Orange Park High School.

The couple worked together at Little Caesars where they met and fell for each other.

A spokesperson for the Florida Department of Transportation said the stretch of I-95 between Norwood and Edgewood Avenues is being resurfaced but added that there was no construction being done the night of the crash.

News4Jax reached out to the trucking company named in the lawsuit, FEC Highway Services LLC, but we have not heard back from anyone.


About the Author: