ISP reports two dead after U.S. 31 crash

Two Jackson County residents died after a two-vehicle collision at 2 p.m. Tuesday on U.S. 31 near County Road 900S in southern Bartholomew County.

Indiana State Police said a white 1999 Mercury Sable passenger car driven by Kelsey M. Lamaster, 18, Seymour, was traveling south on U.S. 31 near the Bartholomew County/Jackson County line. For an unknown reason, Lamaster lost control of the vehicle going off the west side of the road, then returning to the roadway and crossing the centerline, police said.

Lamaster’s vehicle was struck by a northbound black 2004 Ford F-250 pulling a flatbed trailer that was being driven by Paul M. Luedeman, 59, Crothersville,  police said. The vehicles collided in the northbound lane of U.S. 31 before leaving the east side of the roadway and coming to a stop.  The flatbed trailer disconnected from the truck and continued approximately 200 yards north before coming to a stop off the east side of the roadway.

Lamaster, along with a front seat passenger in her vehicle, Brandon M. Freeman, 24, Crothersville, were killed in the accident, police said. They were both pronounced deceased at the scene by the Bartholomew County Coroner’s Office.

Luedeman sustained serious injuries in the crash, police said. He was transported by ambulance to Columbus Regional Hospital in Columbus, Indiana for treatment.

The crash remains under investigation.  Toxicology results on both drivers are pending at this time.  U.S. 31 was closed for approximately three hours for crash investigation and cleanup.

The Lamaster and Freeman families have been notified.

The Indiana State Police was assisted by the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department, Indiana State Excise Police, Columbus Regional Hospital EMS, Elizabethtown Volunteer Fire Department, and Bartholomew County Coroner’s Office.