March 8, 2013

No charges expected in pedestrian fatality

By Christopher Smith

— No charges are expected to be filed in connection with the death of a 25-year-old man from Jamesville, N.Y., who was struck by a car Wednesday morning on Chattanooga Road.

Officials said the incident happened at 6:19 a.m. when a Hyundai Accent driven by 61-year-old Johnny Montgomery of Rocky Face hit Timothy Parker as Parker was crossing Chattanooga Road. A witness told officers Parker was walking from the Baymont Inn and Suites where he was staying to the BP gas station. The gas station is on the corner of Chattanooga Road and North Tibbs Road near Interstate 75.

Parker was taken to Hamilton Medical Center where he died from “massive trauma ... and some head injuries,” said Steve Zahn, the traffic officer who first arrived at the scene. Montgomery was not injured.

“We know he (Parker) was in dark clothes,” Zahn said. “We’re pretty positive there was no speed involved ... The speed limit through there is 45 mph. When someone is traveling through that area at 45 mph and someone is in dark clothes in a dark area like that — you’re not going to have a whole lot of time to react.”

Montgomery was heading south on his way to work and remained at the scene, Zahn added.

“We’re still in the process of interviewing witnesses,” Zahn said of the investigation. “Sometimes, that can take up to two months. I don’t suspect this one will take long. I think this will be completed by the end of next week. Right now, there’s no charges — but I can’t say that 100 percent until the report is done.”

Part of the investigation involves reviewing surveillance footage.

“I can’t release that (the video) right now because the investigation is not complete,” Zahn said. “But it does show that Mr. Montgomery was not speeding — pretty much going with the flow of traffic. (Parker’s) clothes are so dark you can barely pick him up in the video.”

Zahn said Parker was training to be a driver for U.S. Xpress Enterprises, a trucking company with a nearby office in Tunnel Hill. An official with U.S. Xpress did not immediately return a phone message Thursday evening.