A Louisiana police officer is facing charges for the death of two teenagers who were killed when he hit a car during a high-speed pursuit on New Year’s Eve.

David Cauthron was charged Sunday with two counts of negligent homicide for the deaths of Maggie Dunn, 17, and Caroline Gill, 16. Maggie was a junior in high school and Caroline was a sophomore. The girls were on the cheerleading team together. Maggie’s brother, Liam Dunn, was also critically injured during the crash.

“The cop has a lot of questions to answer pertaining to his speed and sheer negligence,” district attorney Tony Clayton said. “The public can rest assured, we will follow the facts.”


The deadly chase was initiated in Baton Rouge after Tyquel Zanders was suspected of stealing the car of a family member. Zanders reportedly took part in a home invasion before taking the keys to the Nissan that was involved in the chase. Addis police officer Cauthron started following Zanders after BRPD ended their pursuit as the suspect crossed the Mississippi River Bridge.

According to investigators, both the officer and the suspect were driving over 100 miles per hour when Cauthron t-boned the teenagers’ car after running a red light. The officer was arrested by the West Baton Rouge Sherriff’s Office.

Zanders was later arrested and is also facing charges of manslaughter in the deaths of the two girls.

“[Zanders] put the chain of events into play,” Clayton said. “He’s responsible for all the reactions to his actions. He’s facing two counts, and if that poor kid doesn’t survive, he’ll face another.”

The two students were memorialized by the Brusly High School cheerleading team in a Facebook post on Sunday.

“As we mourn the tragic deaths of Maggie Dunn and Caroline Gill, please keep their families, friends and the BHS community in your thoughts and prayers,” the team wrote. “Their enthusiasm and bright smiles will be missed more than can be imagined.”

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