The headline in the Virginia Pilot newspaper on August 31, 1991 read:
"2 Killed While Helping At Route 44 Crash"
"Off Duty Officer, Woman Struck; 10 Others Injured"
Officer Starr had worked the overnight shift at the oceanfront, and was headed home at 4:00 A.M. when he stopped on the Virginia Beach Norfolk Expressway (Route 44) to help at an accident scene. A Honda Civic had struck the rear of a taxi cab. The driver of the Honda had been thrown into the windshield and was seriously injured. The taxi cab, driven by a 74 year old man, was smashed into a concrete guardrail.
Officer Starr had crossed over the westbound lanes and jumped the concrete median to reach the accident. A Ford Escort, being driven by a 19 year old, swerved around the crashed Honda Civic, struck Officer Starr and knocked him over 100 feet. The Escort then hit the taxi cab which then struck Annette Joy Compton, a citizen who had stopped her pickup truck to offer aid to the accident victims. Officer Starr and Annette Joy Compton were killed instantly.
Officer Starr was 24 years old, married, and a native of Frisco City, Alabama when he was killed. He graduated from Frisco City High School, and was a Petty Officer with a helicopter squadron stationed at Norfolk Naval Base prior to becoming a police officer. He graduated from the Virginia Beach Police Academy in 1991.