A tractor-trailer driver has been charged in Saturday’s fiery fatal wreck on Interstate 85.
Raymond Lee Hatt Jr., 35, of Michigan was arrested Saturday afternoon and charged with second-degree vehicular homicide, unsafe lane change and signals required. According to warrants for his arrest, Hatt was responsible for the crash on I-85 south near Old Peachtree Road that killed Marietta resident Hafiz Muhammad Ilyas.
At about 10:25 a.m. Saturday, Ilyas was reportedly driving his Toyota Camry in the far right lane of the interstate when Hatt — driving his tractor-trailer in the lane to the left — merged into his lane and cut him off.
“This maneuver forced (Ilyas) onto the shoulder,” Gwinnett County police spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith said. “(Ilyas) lost control of the vehicle and entered back onto the roadway and struck the trailer.”
The Camry got stuck under the tractor-trailer and caught on fire as a result of the collision, Smith said. Ilyas was trapped inside the car and died at the scene.
The incident shut down all six lanes of I-85 south for more than six hours Saturday.
Warrants obtained Monday alleged that Hatt did not use a blinker when changing lanes. He also violated the statute prohibiting changing lanes “until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety,” documents said.
As of Monday morning, Hatt remained in the Gwinnett County jail in lieu of $39,100 bond.
Second-degree vehicular homicide is a misdemeanor.