Both drivers ran lights in wreck on River Watch



Witnesses who observed the June 1 crash that killed three children on River Watch Parkway told police the drivers of both vehicles involved were trying to get through the intersection while the traffic signal was red, according to an accident report released Monday by the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

No criminal charges have been filed against either driver, but the investigation continues, according to Sgt. Monica Belser.

Christopher Whitehead, 33, of Martinez, was heading eastbound on River Watch through the intersection with Stevens Creek Road at 5:36 p.m. and Wade Jackson, 31, of Augusta, was westbound on River Watch, trying to make a left turn onto Stevens Creek, according to the report.

While the intersection light was red, the front of Whitehead’s Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck struck the right side of Jackson’s Toyota Corolla.

After the impact, Whitehead’s truck rolled onto its left side, returned upright and continued to travel eastbound before coming to a rest on the shoulder of the road.

The Corolla, carrying Eric Smalls, 9, in the front passenger seat, and John Powell, 8, and Qumain Jones, 9, in the back seat, rotated clockwise after the impact, coming to a rest facing west.

Powell, Jackson’s stepson, was pronounced dead on the scene by Coroner Mark Bowen, and Jones, Jackson’s nephew, was pronounced dead at Georgia Regents University at 11:15 p.m.

Smalls, a friend of the boys, died Friday morning at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia.

All three boys were wearing seat belts, according to the accident report.

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Fri, 01/19/2018 - 16:01

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