Husband charged in fatal crash

Photo by Michael Buckelew

Photo by Michael Buckelew

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Police have filed criminal charges in a fatal crash originally thought to be caused by Monday evening's torrential rains.

Accident investigators believe Lawrenceville resident Eddie Waters, 35, grabbed the steering wheel of a southbound 2003 Buick Regal on Monfort Road about 6:30 p.m., causing the driver -- his wife -- to plow through a mailbox and utility pole, finally striking a tree.

Waters' wife, Ruby Spencer, 39, of Lawrenceville, died at the scene. Waters -- the front passenger -- and a 10-year-old girl seated behind him were hospitalized with injuries that weren't life-threatening, said Gwinnett police spokesman Cpl. Brian Kelly.

The child is Spencer's daughter, Kelly said.

Waters was later arrested and booked at the Gwinnett County Jail on felony involuntary manslaughter and misdemeanor reckless conduct charges. He remained jailed Tuesday morning on $16,900 bond.

The incident occurred near the intersection of Monfort Road and Providence Way in unincorporated Lawrenceville. Initial reports indicated that thunderstorms sweeping the county at that time may have triggered the wreck.

An investigation revealed "the incident was the direct result of (Waters') intentional manipulation of the vehicle's steering wheel," Kelly said.

Waters' motive for allegedly grabbing the wheel remains under investigation, Kelly said.