Originally created 01/19/99

Victim remains critical



An 11-year-old Lithonia, Ga., boy was in critical condition Monday after a weekend accident on Interstate 20 that killed two people and left three other people hospitalized.

Darion Mack, one of six people in a 1987 Dodge Colt Vista that collided with a transfer truck, was listed in critical condition Monday night at Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

Larry Bembrg, 41, of Stone Mountain, Ga., and 11-year-old Christina Johns of Clarkson, Ga., died in the pileup at 1:30 p.m. Sunday in McDuffie County near the Warren County line, said Georgia State Patrol Cpl. Tom Bentley.

The accident occurred when the Colt collided with a transfer truck that had slowed because of two other traffic accidents, Cpl. Bentley said.

Authorities were still working Monday to piece together the cause of those accidents.

The driver of the Dodge, Joseph Readus, 53, of Lithonia, and 3-year-old Antwuan Johns, of Clarkston, were listed in good condition Monday at MCG. Elizabeth Reid, 43, also of Clarkston, was in fair condition.

Occupants of the transfer truck and a Plymouth Voyager, also involved in the wreck, were uninjured, Cpl. Bentley said.

An investigation by the state patrol's Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team was still incomplete late Monday, according to an agency spokesman.

At least six other people were sent to area hospitals Sunday from five separate accidents on that storm-drenched stretch of Interstate 20 in McDuffie County.

But in Columbia County, authorities saw few ill effects from Sunday's storms, said sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris.

Aside from a few minor incidents, the heavy rains had little effect, he said.

Officials in Richmond and Aiken counties reported no major traffic accidents.

S.B. Crawford covers crime for The Augusta Chronicle. He can be reached at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 111, or scraw@augustachronicle.com.