Springfield Police at the scene of an incident. (Photo by Shannon Cay)

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An 88-year-old Republic man died following a traffic accident Labor Day morning in which he drove through a red light on West Sunshine Street at the James River Freeway, according to Springfield police.

Sterling Garton was driving a 2005 Ford F-150 east on Sunshine Street at about 10:52 a.m. Monday when he ran a red light and collided with a 2020 Ford Explorer driven by Ashley Plunkett, 29, of Republic.

Plunked had a greed light when she drove into the intersection to go west on Sunshine.

The collision pushed Garton’s pickup through a grassy median and into the westbound lanes of Sunshine, where the pickup hit a flatbed trailer attached to a Ford F-350 driven by Jordan Criss, 26, from Springfield.

Garton was transported to a Springfield hospital and later died.

The circumstances of the crash are under investigation. Anyone with information should contact Springfield police at 417-864-1810. 

This was Springfield’s 18th motor vehicle fatality in 2023, according to Springfield Police Department data.  

Steve Pokin

Steve Pokin writes the Pokin Around and The Answer Man columns for the Springfield Daily Citizen. He also writes about criminal justice issues. He can be reached at spokin@sgfcitizen.org. His office line is 417-837-3661. More by Steve Pokin