St. Martin Parish, La. – Troopers from Louisiana State Police Troop I were notified of a single-vehicle crash on Louisiana Highway 31 near Louisiana Highway 86 in St. Martin Parish at approximately 5:30 p.m. on July 31, 2021. The crash ultimately took the life of 23-year-old Deandre L. James of St. Martinville.
Preliminary investigation revealed 23-year-old Stephen T. Boutte was driving a 2011 Buick Lucerne north on La 31. For unknown reasons, his vehicle ran off the roadway and entered a ditch. The vehicle then struck an embankment and a tree, coming to final rest.
Neither the driver nor passenger was properly restrained. Boutte was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries. His passenger, James, was also transported to a local hospital in critical condition. Earlier this morning, Troop I was notified that James had succumbed to his injuries during the night.
Impairment is unknown at this time, but a toxicology sample was taken from Boutte for analysis. This crash remains under investigation and charges are pending.