Weekend accident on I-26 kills 11-year-old - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

Weekend accident on I-26 kills 11-year-old

Billy Dwayne Jones Billy Dwayne Jones

NEWBERRY, SC (WIS) - An accident on Interstate 26 claimed the life an 11-year-old boy Saturday night.

Around 6:45pm, a woman and her children were traveling together on I-26 when their vehicle struck the guardrail and then came to a stop in the fast lane of the interstate.

Shortly after coming to rest, their vehicle was struck by another vehicle. The mother, in an attempt to get her children to safety, got her children and started for the side of the road, when a pickup truck struck the 11-year-old child, knocking him into the median. 

A 18-wheel truck then approached the accident scene and with nowhere to go took the median to avoid the cars. It is unclear at this time if the truck struck the child or not as it entered the median. 

The child was pronounced dead at the scene.

The South Carolina Highway Patrol M.A.I.T. team was called to the scene of the accident and began an investigation into the accident. Deputy Chris Keller of the Newberry County Sheriff's Office was called to the scene to assist with traffic control on the interstate.

At about 11:00pm, Officer Keller was standing at the rear of his patrol car directing traffic when a Jeep approached his police car. Officers say Keller, who had his blue lights on the top of the car activated, a reflective vest, and a flashlight, tried to direct the vehicle into the proper lane; however, the vehicle failed to go to that lane. 

According to a release, the deputy was able to move from the rear of the vehicle, just as the Jeep slammed into his patrol car.   

The officer was not injured; however, his patrol vehicle is thought to be a total loss because of the damage to the accident.

Officers say that as they approached the driver of the vehicle that struck the officer's car, it was obvious that he was under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

The South Carolina Highway Patrol arrested the driver of the Jeep, Billy Dwayne Jones, 38, of North Charleston. Jones is charged with driving under the influence. Jones was released on a $992.50 personal appearance bond.

Updated by Chantelle Janelle

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