Venus Williams Not to Blame for Fatal Car Crash, Will Not Face Charges

Julian Finney/Getty Images for WTA
Julian Finney/Getty Images for WTA

An investigation by police in Florida has concluded that no one is to blame for the car accident involving Venus Williams that resulted in one man’s death, and neither the tennis star nor the other driver will be charged in the incident.

The Sun Sentinel reports that according to an 18-page homicide-investigation report released Wednesday by the Palm Beach Gardens Police, “Based upon this investigation and relevant Florida state statutes, no charges will be filed in this case.”

Linda Barson, 68, was the driver and her husband, Jerome Barson, 78, was the passenger in the 2016 Hyundai Accent that T-boned Williams’ Toyota Sequoia as she waited at an intersection on June 9. Jerome Barson was hospitalized for a lacerated spleen but then developed multiorgan failure and died 13 days after the accident.


The Barsons drove into the intersection when their light turned green and hit Williams’ SUV; she was not injured.

Williams told an officer after the crash that another car had turned left in front of her, causing her to become trapped in the intersection when her light turned red.

Although police had initially found Williams, 37, at fault in the accident, surveillance video released in July corroborated her account of the incident. Police then clarified that she had lawfully entered the intersection on a green light.

The investigation determined that neither Williams nor the Barsons had violated the other’s right of way. “The unknown dark-colored vehicle … started a sequence of events resulting in [Barson] crashing into [Williams],” it said.


The medical examiner ruled that Jerome Barson’s death was caused by complications involving blunt force trauma because of the accident.

His family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Williams.

Read more at the Sun Sentinel.

News Editor for The Root. I said what I said. Period.

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Barry Wombleton

“His family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Williams.”

I really do feel sorry for their loss, but if the law itself has found her innocent then I can’t see how the lawsuit can stand.

Now was the other driver stationary at a red before proceeding on the green? If so how could she not have seen Williams?

If the other driver was approaching red and slowing down, but then saw green and sped up again she should have seen Williams at the intersection. That said it is easy not to notice everything on the road ahead.