Crime & Courts

75-year-old Belmont woman killed; driver charged with texting while driving

N.C. Highway Patrol says texting while driving contributed to a crash that killed a 75-year-old woman on a neighbor’s lawn in Belmont on Saturday.

Belinda Strange Hudspeth, 45, is in Gaston County Jail, charged with second-degree murder, driving while impaired, texting while driving, careless and reckless driving, and driving without carrying a license, according to Trooper J.J. Waters.

Waters said Hudspeth was traveling east on Perfection Avenue in an SUV around noon Saturday when the vehicle ran off the right side of the road. The vehicle struck a fence, several garbage cans, a mailbox and utility pole. The SUV also hit Lavon Ramsey, who was on the lawn at a residence in the 1900 block of Perfection when she was hit, Waters said. Ramsey had lived down the street from where she was hit.

“From what I understand, she was walking down the street to talk to a neighbor,” Waters said.

Gaston Emergency Medical Services transported Ramsey to CaroMont Regional Medical Center in Gastonia, where she was pronounced dead.

Hudspeth has a bond hearing Monday in Gaston County Court, Waters said.

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