Update: Pumpkin Patch death caused by falling tree branch - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Update: Pumpkin Patch death caused by falling tree branch

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(KATV) Scott - It's a tragic case of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. A falling tree limb killed a visitor to the Scott Pumpkin Patch and injured two others.

It happened in Scott Friday in the 1100 block of Craig Road at about 1 p.m.

You can imagine, people who witnessed the accident are in shock. A heavy tree limb up to 40-feet long was no match for the constant wind. The branch fell on visitor, 44-year old Katherine Copeland who was with special needs adults enjoying the day.

Owner, Brandon Chapman was near by when the accident happened, "A big gust of wind came through and after 2 or 3-seconds of this real strong wind we heard a crack and we turned around the tree limb fell at that time."

For 2-years now Scott Pumpkin Patch has been a place organizations take field trips and families use as a background to take fall pictures, but on this sunny, windy day while the Friendship Community Center visitors were sitting at a picnic table, a large tree branch came crashing down from about 50-feet.

It fell on Katherine Copeland, an employee with the adult center. Paramedics tried to revive her but Copeland died on the scene.

A special needs adults was taken to the hospital with minor injures, another woman had a few cuts.

Chapman adds, "I can't even imagine the pain that I feel I know has to be so much worst for the family."

Chapman says his kid plays on the property and until Friday, it's always been a safe fun place for families. "We're sorry and we're doing everything in our power to make sure it doesn't happen again and we'll have experts with a tree service come out and check everything."

The Pulaski County Sheriff's office considers the incident an accident.

Scott Pumpkin Patch plans to re-open Saturday.

 


Authorities say one woman has been killed and two other people injured at a rural pumpkin patch near Scott. The accident occurred around 1 p.m. Friday.

Police say that Katherine Copeland, 44, died after being struck by a large tree branch that was knocked down by a strong gust of wind.

Copeland was with a group from Friendship Community Center out of Benton, a special needs center for adults. Copeland worked for the center.

Witnesses saw the branch fall onto the table where Copeland was sitting with Chris Miller, a special needs adult with the center, and a unidentified woman.

According to the police report, when authorities arrived they found two nurses from the center attempting to aide Copeland by performing CPR on her. However, the ambulance crew pronounced Copeland dead at the scene.

Miller was standing next to the scene. He was complaining about his neck and shoulders, and was transported to a local hospital to be checked. No major injuries were suspected.

"Obviously it's windy where we're at right now, it's fairly flat and when the gust of wind came, it took the branch out," said Pulaski County Sheriff Lt. Carl Minden. "I consider it an unfortunate accident"

According to Minden the limb was at least 30-40 feet long, and fell 50 feet from the tree. It landed directly on a picnic table where several patrons were eating lunch.

Brandon Chapman, the owner of the pumpkin patch, was on site when the branch fell.

"After two or three seconds of this real strong wind we heard a crack, and we turned around. The tree limb fell at that time," said Chapman. "Experts with a tree service will come out and check everything, give us an inspection just to make sure anything like this in our power won't happen again."

"I can't even imagine the pain that I feel. I know it has to be so much worse for the family," said Chapman.

There were no other injuries reported from the scene.