Head-on collision in Clay County leaves 5 dead

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A young woman was heading back to her home in Melrose last Tuesday afternoon, only hours after she watched her husband graduate from the St. Johns River Community College criminal justice academy as a corrections officer when she was hit head on by a Toyota Camry driven by a man from Sisterville, W.V.  The accident happened when the Camry crossed the center line on Florida 21 about four miles south of Florida 16 in Clay County and the head-on impact killed the young wife. What makes this more tragic is the young lady’s husband was driving in front of his wife when the accident occurred behind him.  FHP reported that there were six people in the Toyota Camry.   Four of the dead were in the Camry and the other fatality was the wife of the corrections officer in a 2014 Nissan Altima.   There were two young children in the Camry, and the 4 year old was not in a child restraint, but the two year-old was.  They were the only ones in the Camry who survived but currently are in critical condition at UF Shands. 

The driver of the Camry had a criminal record in Ohio, according to reports in regional news organizations. In early 2012, West Virginia’s Tyler County Sheriff’s Office arrested him and two others on felony warrants for incidents committed in their’s and Wetzel counties, and in Belmont County, Ohio, according to the Tyler Star News. The trio were initially charged with aggravated robbery by the Bellaire Police Department after one of them grabbed a woman’s purse in a Koger supermarket parking lot. As they drove off, the victim grabbed the side of their car and was dragged through the parking lot, suffering broken bones and cuts, according to Bellaire police. The three were arrested when one of them tried to cash a stolen check, according to the Tyler County Sheriff’s Office.  The man was also charged with forgery and trying to cash the victim’s check, two charges of felony “entering without breaking” from an earlier incident in Sistersville, and a felony probation violation in North Carolina, police said. 

Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the families who lost a loved one in this accident and we pray for a speedy recovery for the two young children who are in critical condition.

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