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PA mom of 5 killed in fatal crash after boyfriend cuts brake lines to make crack pipe

Continental Village Fire Department Chief Dan Brophy, assess the accident site during a joint civilian-military emergency drill at the New York National Guard's Camp Smith Training Site near Peekskill, N.Y. (Master Sgt. Corine Lombardo/U.S. Army National Guard)
August 31, 2018

Pennsylvania state police reported that a fatal car crash on August 22 was a homicide, after a Scranton man admitted to cutting his girlfriend’s brake line to make a crack pipe.

John Jenkins, 39, told police that the day before the tragic crash he did tamper with the car belonging to his girlfriend, Tammy Fox, ABC 11 News reported.

He said that the two wanted to smoke crack but he didn’t want Fox to leave to buy a crack pipe, so he tried to pry tubing from her Hyundai Sonata.

Jenkins told police that he knew nothing about cars but, “cut anything from underneath the vehicle that could be used to smoke crack.”

38-year-old Fox, mother of five, suffered fatal injuries when her car slammed into a tree after hitting parked cars due to brake failure at the intersection of North Washington Avenue and Pine Street in Scranton.

Witnesses told police that Fox’s car was traveling about 50 or 60 mph and while the brake lights did flash on and off, the vehicle never slowed down.

Police discovered the severed brake lines following a “mechanical inspection and search of Fox’s vehicle.”

The mechanical inspection revealed that Fox activated the emergency brake, her airbags didn’t deploy, and the brake lines had been cut, USA Today reported.

Fox died at Geisinger Community Medical Center in Scranton from multiple traumatic injuries sustained from the crash, according to the Lackawanna County coroner’s office.

Those who know Fox don’t buy Jenkins’ story.

Vargas said she had a bad feeling about Jenkins, although the two had never met.

Lisa Vargas, a friend of Fox’s for more than 20 years, said: “I just never bought that it was just an accident. I knew it in my heart and I just want justice for her, I really do.”

Vargas said: “I mean, can’t you find something else around your house to smoke crack in? Aluminum foil? Something else. I’m pretty sure if you’re a career crackhead you can find something else besides a brake line to smoke crack in.”

Jenkins was charged with homicide and is being held at the Lackawanna County Prison without bail, the New York Post reported.

A court hearing for Jenkins is scheduled in September.

A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help cover Fox’s funeral expenses and leftover funds will be donated to her children.

Fox was remembered as having the ability to “bring light to dark times,” and that she “gave selflessly to those around her,” the GoFundMe post said.