ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Family and friends are mourning the loss of a man killed as an innocent bystander in what started as a domestic dispute and ended in a deadly crash.
Family told WCCO the victim is 41-year-old Lashay Whittaker. St Paul police say the victim was killed in his vehicle after being struck by another driver who had been speeding through a St. Paul alley in the West Frogtown neighborhood.
Police were originally called because the suspect had been threatening his girlfriend’s son with a machete, but then he took off in his vehicle.
Police say Shawn Konder, 26, from St. Paul drove erratically and at high speeds down alleys in St. Paul just before midnight Friday. Officers turned on their emergency lights, but he kept going. Police say he eventually crashed in the 800 block of Sherburne Avenue.
“All I could hear was a loud explosion,” Gregory Sweeten, who lives nearby, said. “Sounded like somebody had crashed into a train.”
The crash killed Whittaker, a father of two. Konder was also injured and was taken to Regions Hospital and treated for his injuries. He is now in custody at the Ramsey County Jail.
The owner of The Grooming House Barber Shop in St. Paul said Whittaker worked at the Selby Avenue shop for 15 years. He had the responsibility Saturday to tell Whittaker’s customers what had happened.
“It’s hard on them because a lot of them have been seeing him since they been little kids and they’re grown with their own families,” owner and friend Dedrich Young said.
St. Paul Police are investigating the crash.