Lithonia man charged in Friday's fatal wreck on I-985

LAWRENCEVILLE -- The driver of the truck believed to have caused a fatal wreck Friday on Interstate 985 has been arrested and charged with two counts of vehicular homicide, Gwinnett County police said Monday.

At about 3:20 p.m. Friday, the white box truck being driven by 38-year-old Stephen Wadell Scott collided with a Nissan Altima on Interstate 985 South under the Ga. Highway 20 bridge. After being rear-ended, the Altima collided with a pickup truck and then a minivan towing a small trailer.

The driver and passenger of the Altima -- identified Monday as Donna and John Keese, 60 and 62 years old, respectively -- were killed in the wreck. They were a married couple from Lawrenceville, police spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith said.

Three people in the pickup truck were transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. They've since been released, Smith said.

"Speed and alcohol do not appear to have been factors in this accident," Smith said.

Traffic was backed up for much of Friday's afternoon rush hour as emergency crews worked the scene.

Gwinnett County jail records show Scott, a Lithonia resident and driver for Royal Food Service, was arrested Friday and charged with two counts of misdemeanor vehicular homicide, as well as following too closely.

He was released the next day on $12,700 bond.

Royal Food Service is an Atlanta-based company that bills itself as "the Southeast's premier distributor of fresh produce and dairy products." A company spokesperson could not be reached for comment Monday.

Scott was driving a company truck during the accident.


R 3 years, 5 months ago

WOW speed not factor with such metal compression?


ACC12_SEC13Booster 3 years, 5 months ago

Well, the speed limit on that section of highway is 70 miles-per-hour and as is custom for most Metro Atlanta police departments, one is usually not cited for speeding on a four-lane highway until they are at least 10 m.p.h. over the speed limit, usually 15 m.p.h. over the posted speed limit for most departments and even 20 m.p.h. for some. So it is absolutely conceivable that the guy could have been going well over 80 m.p.h. when he caused that fatal collision and still not been cited for excessive speed as is the custom of most Metro Atlanta departments.


notblind 3 years, 5 months ago

Big trucks are heavy and have a lot of kinetic energy. When they hit a car they do a lot of damage even if they are doing the speed limit. Aggressive driving and not maintaining following distance is far too common among truckers. I also see far too many car drivers jumping in front of trucks and slowing down causing chaos.

Nobody here knows what really happened so don't jump to condemn like what is happening in FL.


fbiMom 3 years, 5 months ago

It was a gruesome scene and a tragedy no matter what the cause. A family has lost their loved ones and this man will have to live with the fact that he took two lives and hurt others for the rest of his life. Not an easy burden for anyone to bear. The ripples will go on for a long time. I hope and pray that this was truly an 'accident' and not because someone cut the truck driver off or because he was distracted by his cell phone. He has a lot to live with. My heart goes out to all involved.


gabuci 3 years, 5 months ago

As I was traveling north on 985, I saw all of the congestion due to road work and thought, people are driving 70+ mph and when they get to the curve by the Buford exit, they have to stop on a dime. Not sure why they were doing road work on a holiday weekend and I question if there were signs letting people know. The road is not flat or straight enough to be 70MPH and then to have traffic backed up from merging on 85 to the Buford exit was crazy. My prayers go out to all involved and all who witnessed this horrible accident.


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