Man hit while he changes flat tire

NORCROSS - A 21-year-old Duluth man was changing a flat tire on his girlfriend's sport utility vehicle Wednesday when he was struck and critically injured by another car on Interstate 85.

Police said Terrell Batiste, 21, and his girlfriend, 28-year-old Kikelomo Conley, both of Duluth, were heading north on I-85 in a 1998 Chevrolet Tahoe at 1:44 p.m. when a tire went flat.

The pair stopped in the HOV lane to change the tire, said Cpl. Darren Moloney, spokesman for the Gwinnett County Police Department.

While Batiste was standing near the rear bumper, a 1990 Honda Civic traveling in the HOV lane slammed into him from behind. The impact severed both of his legs, Moloney said.

Batiste was taken to Gwinnett Medical Center with life-threatening injuries. He was still in surgery at press time Wednesday.

Conley was standing to the side of the SUV and was uninjured.

The driver of the Honda, Gilberto Serrano, 19, and his 17-year-old brother Abraham Serrano, both of Snellville, were also transported to Gwinnett Medical Center with injuries that were not life threatening.

Moloney said it was "too early in the investigation to speculate on charges."

The wreck backed up traffic past Pleasantdale Road on Interstate 85 North for several hours Wednesday afternoon, and accident investigators were forced to close two lanes of traffic.