Police Identify Woman Killed in South Side Crash


Three vehicles crashed at the intersection of SW 9th Street and McKinley Avenue in Des Moines on March 31, 2020. (Channel 13 News)

DES MOINES, Iowa – Police have released the name of a woman who died following a three-car crash Tuesday on Des Moines’ south side.

Police say 56-year-old Charla Harker of Des Moines was a passenger in one of the vehicles involved in the crash at the intersection of SW 9th and McKinley Ave.

Emergency crews were called there around 4:10 p.m. Tuesday to respond to the accident. Police say a minivan driven by 45-year-old Matthew Harker was traveling eastbound on McKinley when it entered the intersection against a red light.

The minivan was struck on the passenger side by two northbound vehicles who were unable to avoid a collision.

Matthew and his wife Charla were transported to local hospitals but Charla did not survive. Matthew Harker remains hospitalized with serious injuries.

The drivers of the other vehicles were not hurt.

Police say their investigation continues but it appears that failure to obey a traffic device appears to be the main contributing factor to this crash. Distracted driving and impairment have not yet been ruled out.

No charges have been filed at this time.


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