ATLANTA — The Atlanta Braves organization has offered its condolences to head trainer Jeff Porter, saying the team was "deeply saddened" after Porter's wife Kathy died in what authorities described as a collision between a Georgia State Patrol cruiser and an SUV driven by the trainer.
"The Braves family is deeply saddened and shocked to learn about the tragic accident," the team said in an emailed statement hours after the crash Saturday afternoon. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to Jeff and Kathy's family, their son David and all their friends and loved ones."
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution ( http://bit.ly/urkIDS ) reported that Porter and his wife and two others were on their way to the Chick-fil-A-Bowl at the time, about 4:40 p.m. Saturday.
State Patrol spokesman Gordy Wright said in an email statement to The Associated Press that the state trooper was traveling with the lights and siren activated Saturday afternoon when the cruiser collided with a Ford Expedition driven by Porter at an intersection with Capitol Avenue and Memorial Drive.
Wright said the trooper, who had been traveling westbound on Memorial, was en route to assist another trooper who was attempting to stop a motorcyclist on nearby Interstate 20, west of the Downtown Connector. Wright said that motorcycle had failed to yield.
According to Wright, the patrol car collided with the Ford Expedition that was northbound on Capitol Avenue, hitting the SUV on the passenger's side. The statement said the SUV then struck a utility pole.
Kathy Porter, 54, of Loganville, a passenger in the SUV, died in the crash, Wright's statement said. It added that Jeff Porter and two other passengers in the SUV— the couple's 19-year-old son David and a friend, Courtney Ann Williams, 18, of Grayson — were taken to Grady Memorial Hospital for treatment of injuries. All three had been released by Saturday night.
The trooper, who was not immediately identified, was examined at the same hospital and released. He was placed on administrative leave as state police, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Fulton County District Attorney's office investigate.
Wright said the State Patrol's Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team was dispatched to the crash scene to help determine the cause.