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Man fleeing police caused crash that injured Gayle Manchin, authorities say

HOMEWOOD, Ala. (AP) — A man fleeing police caused the Alabama car crash that injured Gayle Manchin, head of an economic development partnership of the federal government and 13 state governments and the wife of U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, along with a colleague of hers, authorities said Wednesday.

Police in Homewood, a Birmingham suburb, said the man faces charges of assault in connection to the crash.

Gayle Manchin, 76, was injured in the Monday wreck as she and a colleague, Guy Land, were headed to an event in Birmingham for the Appalachian Regional Commission, her husband said in a statement. Gayle Manchin is the co-chair of the commission.

She was admitted to a hospital and discharged Wednesday, the ARC said in a statement.

“She is now in West Virginia continuing to recover with support from her family. She is grateful for the outpouring of well wishes from partners throughout Appalachia and beyond, as well as the outstanding care provided by the UAB medical team,” the statement said.

Land, ARC’s congressional liaison, also was injured and remained hospitalized, the agency said. His injuries were not disclosed.

Homewood Police Sgt. John Carr said a seven-minute police chase began Monday when officers tried to stop a car in connection with a felony warrant and a traffic offense. The chase wound through Homewood and surrounding areas and ended when the fleeing car struck the SUV carrying Gayle Manchin and Land, al.com reported.

Tradarryl Rishad Boykins, 31, of Birmingham, is charged with two counts of felony assault, attempting to elude police and certain persons forbidden to possess a firearm -– also a felony. Homewood police said he is being held on $2 million bond. Court records were not immediately available to show if Boykins has a lawyer to speak on his behalf.

Gayle Manchin, a former educator, served as president of the West Virginia Board of Education and as the state’s secretary of education and the arts under Republican Gov. Jim Justice. She was sworn in as the Appalachian Regional Commission’ s 13th federal co-chair in 2021 after being nominated by President Joe Biden.

Joe Manchin was the governor of West Virginia from 2005 until 2010, when he was elected to the Senate. The couple have been married since 1967 and have three children.

The Associated Press

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