Case Thrown Out Involving Trooper In Fatal Crash

By: Deneige Broom; Danielle Eldredge Email
By: Deneige Broom; Danielle Eldredge Email

Gadsden County, FL - The case against Detrick McClellan has been thrown out.

WCTV is investigating the details. Stay with Eyewitness News for more information.


Gadsden County, FL - Florida Highway Patrol has just fired one of its troopers because of a crash that killed a woman in February.

Michelle Campbell was killed in a crash on County Road 268 in Gadsden County, that FHP says was caused by fired trooper Detrick McClellan.

McClellan was driving on County Road 268 when FHP says he lost control hit the car in which Campbell was a passenger.

FHP says McClellan was fired Tuesday, for violating multiple pursuit violations during that crash.

McClellan worked for FHP since June of 2006.


By: Danielle Eldredge
February 13, 2012

Quincy, FL--A fatal crash over the weekend involved an on-duty trooper with the Florida Highway Patrol.

This is more than a curvy country road in Gadsden County. It's the scene of a fatal accident. Michele Campbell from Quincy is dead after the car she was a passenger in, collided with a state trooper's patrol car Friday evening. Detrick McClellan, the FHP trooper, and Tennille Smith, the driver of Campbell's vehicle, are both at Tallahassee Memorial. Hospital reps say, McClellan is in "fair condition" and Smith is in "good condition."

According to the accident report, the trooper was heading southbound on County Road 268. For whatever reason, when the trooper started making the curve to the left he veered off onto the shoulder. At that point it appears as though the trooper was trying to regain control and ended up in the northbound lane. At that point his car collided with the car Campbell was riding in.

FHP says it could be up to 60 days until we know exactly what happened and who is at fault.

"If he is found at-fault what is protocol?" said Eldredge.

"At the end of the investigation, if he is found at fault, this incident will be compared to other incidents, and we'll take the appropriate action," said Lt. Jeff Frost with FHP.

FHP is investigating the crash. Frost says there are no plans to call in an outside agency. He says it is standard procedure for FHP to investigate crashes that involve its own troopers.

We did speak to the victim's family today. They're still in shock and have no comment. We'll be keeping up with this case as it unfolds.

**Note** For more information including official FHP crash reports click on the link below titled [UPDATE] One Dead in Gadsden County Car Accident.


[UPDATE] February 12, 2012-- 11:30 am

The passanger in the Mitsubishi Galant, Michelle Campbell, died at 12:01 am February 11, 2012, from injuries sustained in this crash. The other vehicle involved in the crash, a Ford CV, was a marked Florida Highway Patrol vehicle. The driver of the CV, Detrick McClellan, and the driver of the Galant, Tennille Smith, were both taken to the hospital in serious condition.


Quincy , Florida -- February 10, 2012 --

A 2006 Ford CV being driven by Detrick McClellan, 33, was traveling southbound on County Road 268 north of Moore Road in the southbound lane entering a curve to the left. A 2006 Mitsubishi Galant was traveling northbound on County Road 268 north of Moore Road in the northbound lane approaching the same curve.

For unknown reasons, the Ford traveled off of the roadway onto the shoulder on the west side of the road. McClellan attempted to reenter the roadway causing the Ford to travel out of control. While the Ford was traveling side ways across the northbound lane, the front of the Galant collided with the right side of the Ford.which came to a rest facing north on the east side shoulder of County Road 268.

The Galant came to rest facing east partially in the northbound lane and partially on the east shoulder. The driver Tennille Smith, 35, and his passenger Michelle Campbell, 51 were taken to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital. Campbell is listed in critical condition, while Smith is treated for serious injuries.

Charges are pending at this time.

The Gadsden County Sheriff's Office, Gadsden EMS, and Quincy Fire Department assisted the Florida Highway Patrol with this crash scene.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by someone who knows Location: New York, NY on Feb 22, 2012 at 12:41 PM
    He was responding & enroute to a call when the incident occured. Next time you negative naysayers have an emergency why not call one another. One of the largest problems with this society is people have no respect for authority. I am not looking to blame anyone but as a driver you are supposed to remain in control of your vehicle at all times. The trooper lost control of his vehicle granted but did the car that was driven by Ms. Smith lose control as well? I'm just asking.
  • by Saved4Real Location: Gadsden County on Feb 19, 2012 at 06:10 PM
    Pray that God will heal on both sides.
  • by Just Me Location: Jackson Co. on Feb 19, 2012 at 01:42 PM
    You know why charges are "pending" & fault has not been identified? Why waste the time? it seems as there are enough experts on here who have already solved it. Seriously, it is evident who is at fault at 1st look (trooper), but the "why" is important too, did a tire blow out, kid run in the road, etc. I too am curious, but I'll wait & see what happens, then IF it seems odd, I'll get my drawers in a wad & say something. Another thought: How many major crashes does Quincy PD investigate? Do you really want them "learning" on something this important? Nah, I didn't think so.
  • by Holly on Feb 16, 2012 at 12:19 PM
    these Gadsden roads are horrible. Too narrow, lots of curves and the speed limits are too high for night time. praying for all involved
  • by curious on Feb 15, 2012 at 05:50 PM
    Apologizing on behalf of the negatively. Friends ask to use people phone to comment and post stupidity. What is this world coming to. Instead if criticizing him why not pray for the families. Prayers go up and blessings come down
  • by curious Location: chattahoochee on Feb 15, 2012 at 05:27 PM
    Last I checked the law is the law. Im so amazed how things get swept under the rug when officers their self get involved in accidents. It's no secret he was always breaking the law and nothing was done. Maybe this was the way to prove that he abuses his power. God is sick of foolishess and it's been going on to long with him. God don't like ugly.
  • by curious Location: chattahoochee on Feb 15, 2012 at 05:24 PM
    Last I checked the law is the law. Im so amazed how things get swept under the rug when officers their self get involved in accidents. It's no secret he was always breaking the law and nothing was done. Maybe this was the way to prove that he abuses his power. God is sick of foolishess and it's been going on to long with him. God don't like ugly.
  • by Anonymous on Feb 15, 2012 at 11:37 AM
    People are so quick to play reporter or judge another persons situation, don't blame anyone for the tragedy that happen just be glad that the one's survived are okay and sorry for the one's that was lost. because all families have to suffer due to things that happen in our lives. So to all the judgemental people "GET A LIFE AND MIND YOURS".
  • by LEONCitizen Location: Tallahassee on Feb 15, 2012 at 11:24 AM
    Once again, too many people rush in to judge situations about which they know very little. Our FHP troopers put their lives on the line every day for us and, once in a rare while, one of them has a serious accident. If you drove as many miles in all kinds of conditions as these men and women do to ensure the safety of the public, you might not be so quick to judge. No, these troopers are not above the law but they provide an invaluable service to us all. My prayers and sympathy to all involved--nobody will escape the physical and emotional pain of such an accident. Let he who is without blame cast the first stone.
  • by IJS Location: Tallahassee Florida on Feb 15, 2012 at 08:03 AM
    Could weather have been a factor in this accident....it was raining that day wasn't it? I've lost control of my car in the rain and no, I was not speeding, ijs. But hey I guess I am not perfect like those pointing fingers and trying to make the FHP trooper out to be some "bad" guy. I can't believe how some of the people are acting on here. It is sad that a life was lost, but it was an accident, not like he went out with the intentions of harming someone! Why don't we just pray for all involved?
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