Driver killed in fiery collision with police SUV transporting a prisoner in Phoenix

Dec 21, 2023, 10:23 AM | Updated: Dec 22, 2023, 7:26 am

File photo of a Phoenix police vehicle with yellow crime scene tape on it...

A Phoenix Police SUV carrying a prisoner was involved in a deadly collision on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023. (Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)

(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)

PHOENIX – One person was killed in a fiery collision involving a police vehicle carrying a prisoner in Phoenix on Thursday morning, authorities said.

The second vehicle burst into flames after the crash just before 9 a.m. at the intersection of 35th Avenue and Thunderbird Road, the Phoenix Police Department said.

The Phoenix Fire Department responded and put out the fire. The driver, who was alone in the car, was pronounced dead at the scene. She was identified later as 19-year-old Ashley Vailes.

The officer driving the marked police SUV and the assault suspect being transported were taken to a hospital with minor injuries, police said.

The police cruiser was heading west on Thunderbird Road without its lights on and turning left onto 35th Avenue when the collision occurred, police said.

The other vehicle was traveling east on Thunderbird. After the collision, the car struck a light pole and power box just east of the intersection before bursting into flames.

The intersection was closed for hours in the aftermath of the crash as investigators scoured the area.

Preliminary information indicated that Vailes drove into the intersection on a red light before the collision, police said.

An internal investigation into the incident will also be conducted.

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Driver killed in fiery collision with police SUV transporting a prisoner in Phoenix