Fayetteville employee’s death leads to negligent homicide arrest

Courtesy photo
Jackie Luper, a Fayetteville Transportation Department employee, died Thursday after being struck by a vehicle in a work zone on Joyce Boulevard.

A Fayetteville woman was arrested and charged with negligent homicide after a city Transportation Department employee struck by her car died on Thursday.

Jackie Luper, 57, of West Fork, was listed in critical condition Wednesday evening at Washington Regional Medical Center, but died Thursday afternoon.


Luper was one of three city employees injured when a car, driven by Jo Lynn Jackson, 51, crashed into a work zone on Joyce Boulevard around 7:30 a.m. Wednesday morning.

Jackson initially faced charges in connection with driving while intoxicated (drugs), reckless driving and disobeying a traffic control device.

According to a preliminary police report, blood tests determined that Jackson was under the influence of prescription drugs and unable to safely operate a motor vehicle safely at the time of the wreck. The report also states that Jackson later admitted taking prescription medications Wednesday morning.

Fayetteville police Sgt. Craig Stout said a subsequent investigation revealed that Jackson’s 12-year-old daughter was in the vehicle at the time of the collision, but had left the scene with her father during the initial investigation. As a result, Jackson was also charged with one count of endangering the welfare of a minor.

Luper’s transportation crew was preparing to repair a crack in the road in front of the Butterfield Trail Village retirement community when the collision occurred.

Police said the workers were wearing high visibility green shirts and had placed cones and signs both inside the designated construction area and 1,500 feet west of the work zone to warn drivers of the hazards ahead.

Jackson’s vehicle struck both Luper and Bradley Robbins, 34, of Farmington.

A third transportation worker, Brent Horn, 30, of Springdale, suffered minor injuries while jumping out of the way.

A second car, driven by Ronnie Davidson, 28, of Springdale, crashed into the back of Jackson’s car after the initial collision.

Davidson was arrested in connection with driving while intoxicated and following too close.

According to a Washington County Detention Center intake report, both Jackson and Davidson were released Wednesday.

Upon learning of the new charges Friday afternoon, police said Jackson turned herself in at the Fayetteville Police Department.