Man in Coma After Crash in Cape Girardeau

IMPORTANT UPDATE:  The Cape Girardeau Police has since conducted a follow up on this matter. St Louis University Hospital incorrectly reported to our agency that Deffenbaugh expired during attempts at a life-saving surgery. Hospital staff has now reported that Deffenbaugh did survive surgery but he is comatose and unresponsive.


On Monday, 02/01/2021, at approximately 4:30 PM, Cape Girardeau Police Officers responded to a report of a motor vehicle accident on South Sprigg, just south of Southern Expressway. Upon arrival, Officers located evidence of a single vehicle accident in which a 2007, Ford Ranger pick-up truck had overturned multiple times and the driver had been ejected from the vehicle. The driver, who was the only occupant, was immediately transported by ambulance to a local hospital. This driver was later transported to a St Louis hospital due to the severity of the injuries. The driver, who has since been identified as John W Deffenbaugh, a 47 male from Cape Girardeau, passed away as a result of the injuries that he suffered during the crash. Investigating Officers determined that Deffenbaugh overcorrected his steering while he was negotiating a turn. This caused his vehicle to overturn multiple times and ultimately caused Deffenbaugh to be ejected from the vehicle. Excessive speed and a failure to use a seat belt were determined to be the contributing factors in this fatality motor vehicle crash. The Cape Girardeau Police Department offers its condolences to Deffenbaugh’s family and friends during this tragic event.


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