Crash victim says chase should have stopped

Martha Connelly, 58, was being carried inside an ambulance that was involved in a deadly crash on Nov. 19.

The crash claimed the life of EMT Keith

The crash claimed the life of EMT Keith Chipepo.

NEWARK - A family is in mourning after a deadly car crash killed the woman they say was the head of their family.

Martha Connelly, 58, was being carried inside an ambulance that was involved in a deadly crash on Nov. 19. She was being transported for her regular trip to dialysis, and had moved up the date in order to be well enough to celebrate Thanksgiving with her family.

Instead, the ambulance was hit by a minivan, which also crashed with a food truck, a bus and two police cruisers. Several others involved in the accident were injured.

The crash also killed EMT Keith Chipepo of Montclair.

The driver of the minivan, James Sterling, of Elizabeth, has been charged with aggravated manslaughter, aggravated assault, driving with a suspended license and eluding.

Connelly’s family says the intersection where the accident occurred is subject to heavy traffic. They say a police chase should have been called off before it even reached the area, which could have helped prevent the crash. 

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