The driver of a black Kia who was killed on Interstate 35 in Denton Monday afternoon when her car rear-ended an 18-wheeler and caught fire has been identified.
The woman from Edmond, Okla., ran into the back of the 18-wheeler “with little to no change in speed” while in a construction area on northbound I-35 near Rector Road, officer Shane Kizer, a Denton police spokesman, wrote in a news release Tuesday.
Harlea Barrentine, 25, was pronounced dead at 2:16 p.m., according to the Tarrant County medical examiner’s office.
The wreck was called in at 2:06 p.m. A Texas Department of Transportation highway repair crew was working on that portion of the highway where an electronic arrow board directed all northbound traffic into the left lane, Kizer wrote.
Witnesses told police Barrentine was driving “around 50-plus mph” and was “having trouble maintaining a single lane of traffic,” Kizer wrote.
While traffic was moving at a “slow pace” Barrentine “suddenly maneuvered into the left lane” and ran into the back of the 18-wheeler.
Denton police are investigating if there were other factors involved in the accident.
Monica S. Nagy