Isabel Jennifer Seward, 16, of Atlanta, was identified Thursday evening, Sept. 10, as the driver of a motor vehicle that Vermont State Police say killed an elderly Ferrisburgh couple during a head-on crash on U.S. 7 in Charlotte on Tuesday, Sept. 8.

Chester Hawkins, 73, and Connie Hawkins, 72, were killed when Seward’s northbound 2009 Toyota Tacoma crossed the centerline and struck their southbound car, police said.

Connie Hawkins died at the scene, while Chester Hawkins died at the University of Vermont Medical Center, police said.

Authorities initially withheld the name of the teen driver, which is public under the Vermont Constitution, the Vermont Public Records Law and the rules of the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles.

The Vermont Community Newspaper Group, including Shelburne News, was among the members of the public to appeal for the release of the name.

Chittenden County State’s Attorney Sarah George said Sept. 10 in an email to Shelburne News that she would not release the driver’s name. George did say if charges are filed against Seward, she planned to bring them in Vermont Family Court, but those proceedings are confidential.

Vermont State Police spokesman Adam Silverman said later that day that upon further internal review of the law a decision was made to release Seward’s name.

The Hawkins’ 2012 Chevrolet Malibu was demolished in the crash, State Trooper Bradley Miller said.

Seward’s truck also was destroyed.

All three people were wearing their seatbelts, Miller said.

Police have not said why Seward’s vehicle crossed the double yellow line during the crash about 4:05 p.m. Sept. 8 near Church Hill Road.

Traffic on U.S. 7 in the area was shut down for several hours as state police attempted to reconstruct the details of the crash. The case remains under investigation.

The road was dry and the weather cloudy, police said.

Reliable news and information is vitally important. Local advertising has been affected by the COVID-19 crisis but the Vermont Community Newspaper Group remains committed to its responsibility to serve its communities. Your communities. With some assistance from loyal readers, community organizations, foundations and other funders, we hope to keep reporters on the job keeping you informed. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to our local journalism fund. Thank you for your support.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexual language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be proactive. Use the "Report" link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.