Police are investigating whether a Franklin man who set his wife on fire was the driver of a truck that went the wrong way on Interstate 65 and crashed head-on into a semi.
Police have not confirmed the identity of the truck driver who was killed after the vehicle burst into flames.
But police said the truck in the accident on I-65 near Greenwood is the same one driven by Donn Keever, after he poured gasoline on his estranged wife, set her on fire and left a Franklin home before police arrived.
At 12:45 p.m. Friday, Franklin police were called to a home in the 100 block of Highland Avenue. A witness told police Keever threw gas on his estranged wife, Amy Keever, and lit her on fire. About 15 minutes later, authorities were responding to the fiery crash on the interstate.
She received serious burns over a large portion of her body and was sent to Eskenazi Hospital in Indianapolis, according to a news release from Franklin police. She was listed in critical condition Friday afternoon.
Donn Keever was driving a red 2001 Dodge Ram pickup, which is the same vehicle that was involved in the crash on I-65 near the Main Street exit in Greenwood, Franklin Police Lt. Kerry Atwood said.
Johnson County Coroner Craig Lutz said confirmation of the driver’s identity could take some time.
The crash happened at 1 p.m., shutting down the highway for hours and snarling traffic for miles.
Witnesses told police the driver of a Dodge Ram pickup was going south in the northbound lanes of I-65, just north of the Main Street exit in Greenwood, according to a news release from Indiana State Police.
That area of the interstate is under construction, and both southbound and northbound traffic have been shifted to the northbound side of the interstate.
Police said the driver was speeding and then turned into the path of a semi driven by Toby Klar, 50, of Nashville, Tennessee. The semi flipped onto its side, blocking traffic across the interstate.
The pickup then hit a car and came to a stop against a barrier before it burst into flames, the release said.
The driver of the semi was not injured. The driver of the car that was hit, Donald Whitney, 47, of Greenwood, was taken to Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, where he was treated for non-life-threatening injuries, the release said.
Investigating officers said they aren’t sure why the driver of the pickup was heading the wrong direction. But witnesses said the truck was heading south in the northbound passing lane of I-65 when it suddenly turned into the semi.
When emergency workers arrived, the pickup was engulfed in flames, the release said.
Northbound I-65 remained closed through rush hour while crews worked to clean up the wreckage. South of there, police also were called to a crash on I-65 between Edinburgh and Franklin, when a truck crashed into a construction barrier, according to the police report.
Just after noon, a pickup flipped and nearly struck two construction workers nearby, according to a report from the sheriff’s department.
The driver, Patrick J. Kennally, 36, of Savannah, Georgia, told police he had dropped his cigarette and bent down to pick it up and crashed into the barrier. Kennally had a cut to his head, and two passengers in the truck complained of chest pain, the report said.