NEWTON CO., Mo. — A Seneca woman is now charged in Newton County Court with DWI – involving the death of another.
Jessica Oliver, 31, is charged in the fatal crash that happened on August 10, 2021, on Highway 43 between Seneca and Joplin near Kapok Drive.
Missouri Highway Patrol responded to the call around 7:30 PM that evening. That’s where they say Ilyas Qawishabazz, 55, of Joplin, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Oliver, according court records, was driving a Chevy truck when she failed to maintain her half of the roadway by crossing over the center line. Troopers say Oliver’s truck hit the Lincoln-Continental Qawishabazz was driving, head on.
Oliver was transported to Mercy Hospital in Joplin with serious injuries, but was never arrested or charged in the case until March 16, 2023.
Court records say the trooper who worked the case resigned from the Missouri Highway Patrol, but it does not say why the case stalled.
Another officer, J. Baird, filed the probable cause statement indicating he requested Oliver’s records from Mercy. Those records, according to Baird, said Oliver tested positive for methamphetamine and THC.
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Oliver has not been arrested, but records with the Department of Corrections shows she is on probation for fraudulent use of a credit/debit device out of Jasper County. According to Missouri’s Case Net, a warrant has been issued for Oliver’s arrest for violating her probation.
A court date on the DWI charge in Newton County has not yet been set.
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The family of Qawishabazz has a Facebook page calling for Justice4Q.