On May 16, 2013 at about 11:45 a.m., St. Louis police say that Darvin Wallace, age 43, was fatally injured after being run over by a box truck as the truck driver tried to escape and get to a police station for help. Darvin Wallace had been clinging to the box truck on Union Boulevard when the truck driver swerved in and out of the roadway trying to shake his grasp, police reports say.
Wallace’s widow, Jay Wallace, age 40, said that the driver of the box truck was the aggressor and that it was the driver of the truck who came at Wallace with a hammer.
“That’s not like him,” she said. “Darvin didn’t have any enemies. He’s a family man. You wouldn’t be able to talk to nobody who could have told you anything bad about him.”
She said he was a driver for First Student bus company, transporting St. Louis Public School students. He had been returning from lunch and had two co-workers in his SUV when the incident began at about 11:45 a.m. on Thursday.
Wallace lived in the 2800 block of Delmar Boulevard in St. Louis.
Here is the police account of what happened:
A 42-year-old man driving the box truck was traveling in the westbound direction on I-70 and east of Union Boulevard. The truck may have cut off a white Lincoln Navigator in traffic.
The white Lincoln Navigator, driven by Darvin Wallace, pulled alongside the truck and a man in the car began shouting at the truck driver. Darvin Wallace then pulled in front of the truck and slammed on the brakes. The truck swerved to avoid crashing into the back of the Lincoln Navigator. The truck got off the highway on Union Boulevard, with the Lincoln Navigator following.
At a traffic light on Union Boulevard, both were stopped when Wallace got out of his vehicle carrying a hammer. He swung it and broke the truck’s passenger window. Wallace then leaned into the truck and started swinging the hammer at the truck driver but lost his grip on the hammer. Wallace went back to the Lincoln Navigator and returned with a large Maglite flashlight. He swung the flashlight at the windshield and hit the truck driver on the right arm. The truck driver received minor injuries.
Wallace’s widow said the driver of the truck initially approached with the hammer, and that it doesn’t make sense that the truck driver would sit there while Wallace returned to his Lincoln Navigator. “Common sense says if you are being attacked, you’re not going to sit there and wait for him to get back to you,” said Wallace’s widow.
Police said the truck driver drove forward to try to get away. He turned east on Margaretta Avenue to try to get to the St. Louis Police Department’s north patrol station.
Police said Wallace got back in the Lincoln Navigator and chased the truck, ramming it from behind. Wallace then got out of the Lincoln Navigator and jumped onto the driver’s side sidesteps of the box truck, pounding on the driver’s window. The truck driver then tried to shake Wallace from the truck — driving forward and backward until Wallace fell off. That’s when police say the truck accidentally ran over Wallace. He was taken to a hospital, where he died.
The driver of the truck was not arrested. Police continue to investigate, and Jay Wallace is hoping they learn more.
The couple have five children, ranging from 7 to 20 years old, and she is a bus driver for the Special School District.
It takes a special type of person to drive a bus full of kids, she said.
“Darvin’s side of the story has not been told. It’s all what (the truck driver’s) side has said. Everybody’s making it look like he’s an attacker, this vicious man,” she said. “I just want justice to be done.”
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