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Ex-rugby star Pedrie Wannenburg killed in crash in Texas by teenager fleeing traffic stop

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A South African rugby star died in a car crash in Texas on Friday when a teenager fleeing a traffic check rammed his car, local authorities said.

Pedrie Wannenburg, 41, was inside his car with his wife Evette and their daughter Isabelle and son Francois at the time of the collision, which took place when cops attempted to stop the 16-year-old driver at outside of Houston, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Wannenburg’s 8-year-old son was airlifted to hospital in critical condition. His wife and 10-year-old daughter were not injured.

The driver struck three vehicles, and a fourth that was unable to stop in time also collided with the scene, Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said. A total of six people were hospitalized, according to local firefighters.

“One of our units attempted to carry out a roadside check in Greenhouse Rd and Little York when the vehicle got away. The suspect vehicle then struck two other vehicles,” Gonzalez said in a statement on Twitter.

Gonzalez identified the sole fatal victim of the crash as Wannenberg and said his wife and 10-year-old daughter were not injured in the accident.

Suspect Ali Alabadi was slapped with multiple vehicle charges by the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.
Cy-Fair/Facebook Fire Department
Pedrie Wannenburg was driving with his wife and two children before the fatal car crash.
Pedrie En Evette Wannenburg/Face
Rugby player Pedrie Wannenburg and his wife.
Pedrie Wannenburg’s wife was not injured in the fatal crash.
Pedrie En Evette Wannenburg/Face
Denver captain Pedrie Wannenburg #8 poses for a post-game portrait following the Professional Rugby Organization's inaugural game.
It is unclear where Pedrie Wannenburg was traveling with her family prior to the incident.
JASON CONNOLLY/AFP via Getty Images

Her 8-year-old son remains in critical condition with “mildly threatening injuries”, Gonzalez said.

The 16-year-old suspect has been identified as Ali Alabadi. He was going 100 miles per hour at the time of the accident, the Houston Chronicle reported.

The sheriff’s deputy who prosecuted Alabadi after a 5:45 p.m. traffic stop “is still talking to the DA’s office” about the circumstances of the lawsuit, said Maj. Quincey Whitaker of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, according to the Chronicle.

Rugby player Pedrie Wannenburg has died after a multi-vehicle crash in Texas.
Six people were sent to hospital following the collision with multiple cars, the local fire department said.
Cy-Fair/Facebook Fire Department
Bulls' Pedrie Wannenburg celebrates victory after the Super 14 Final match between Vodacom Bulls and Chiefs at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on May 30, 2009 in Pretoria, South Africa.
Pedrie Wannenburg had a storied career with the South African national ruby ​​team.
Left Handed Shivambu/Gallo Images/Getty Images
Rugby player Pedrie Wannenburg has died after a multi-vehicle crash in Texas.
Suspect Ali Alabadi reportedly drove 100 miles per hour before hitting several cars.
Cy-Fair/Facebook Fire Department
Pedrie Wannenburg seen competing during the Heineken Cup final in London on May 19, 2012.
Wannenburg competes in the Heineken Cup final in London on May 19, 2012.
David Rogers/Getty Images

The teen was charged with murder, reckless aggravated assault causing grievous bodily harm and aggravated assault causing bodily harm, the sheriff’s office said.

Wannenburg played 20 times for Springbok – South Africa’s national ruby ​​team – between 2002 and 2007, and was close to being selected for South Africa’s World Cup-winning squad in France.

He went on to win three titles with the Pretoria-based side in 2007, 2009 and 2010.

Wannenburg was based in Texas, coaching Austin Elite Rugby and was the head coach of Rice University Rugby Club.

Rugby player Pedrie Wannenburg has died after a multi-vehicle crash in Texas.
The scene of the fatal car collision in Houston.
Cy-Fair/Facebook Fire Department
Rugby player Pedrie Wannenburg has died after a multi-vehicle crash in Texas.
One of Pedrie Wannenburg’s sons was seriously injured after the collision.
Pedrie En Evette Wannenburg/Face

With post wires

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