State Police Maryland State Police Investigating Fatal Two-Vehicle Crash In Charles County


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(WALDORF, MD) – On Monday, April 22, 2024, shortly before 3 p.m., Troopers from the Maryland State Police La Plata Barrack responded to United States Route 301 (Crain Highway) at Acton Lane for a report of a two-vehicle crash. Due to the circumstances, the Maryland State Police CRASH Team responded to assume the investigation.

According to a preliminary investigation, a GMC Envoy, operated by Stacy Jermain Barksdale, 38, of Waldorf, Maryland, was traveling on southbound U.S. Route 301 approaching Acton Lane in the right turn only lane. At the same time, a Ford Expedition, operated by Denise Kesterson, 55, of Fort Washington, Maryland and occupied by Gary Cooper, 61, of Fort Washington, Maryland, was making a left turn from northbound U.S. Route 301 onto Acton Lane when the GMC, operated by Barksdale, failed to stop at the red light and struck the Ford.

Cooper was pronounced deceased on the scene. The driver of the Ford was flown by Maryland State Police Helicopter Trooper 2 to the University of Maryland Capital Region Hospital for treatment of their injuries. Barksdale was transported by ambulance to the University of Maryland Capital Region Hospital for treatment of her injuries. Investigators believe that impairment and speeding may have been factors in this crash.

Anyone who may have witnessed this crash is asked to contact Sergeant J. Zimmerman of the Maryland State Police Crash Team at (301) 392-1231 or can email a statement to

Once their investigation is complete, the Maryland State Police Crash Team will submit their findings to the Charles County State’s Attorney’s Office, who will decide whether charges will be filed in this case. The crash remains under investigation.


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