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Forsyth woman killed in collision with logging truck

POSTED: April 23, 2008 5:02 a.m.

CUMMING — Authorities are still trying to determine what caused a log truck to collide with a pickup Thursday in Dawson County, killing a 33-year-old Forsyth County woman.

Felicia Croy, 33, of Riley Road died at about 10 a.m. at the scene on Kelly Bridge Road, near the Dawson-Forsyth county line, said Cpl. Rinehart of the Georgia State Patrol’s Cumming post.

Rinehart, who was the first trooper on the scene, and other authorities said it appears the log truck lost control while traveling west on Kelly Bridge.

"The logs came loose as it overturned," he said, adding that the trailer of the log truck hit Croy’s eastbound GMC Sonoma.

The truck struck Croy’s pickup head on, spilling its cargo onto her truck, authorities said.

The patrol’s specialized collision reconstruction team is handling the investigation. The unit will determine what, if any, charges the driver of the 18-wheeler may face.

"The SCRT team will only investigate prosecutable fatalities," Rinehart said.

Donna Garrett with the state patrol said Friday that calling in the team "indicates that the incident is able to be prosecuted," adding that "the team reconstructs the accident to determine the cause."

The truck driver, whose name has not been released, worked for Reece Logging Co. of Jasper. A spokesman for the company said Friday he could not comment on whether the logs were properly secured or give out any other information.

Croy’s body is currently at a crime lab in Atlanta, said Sherry Jordan, an employee of Ingram Funeral Home, which is handling the arrangements.

On Friday, Gwinnett County authorities released the name of the man killed in a wreck Thursday afternoon in Buford.

Averardo Lopez, 39, of Sugar Hill, was killed when the 1997 Mitsubishi Mirage he was driving was hit by a 2002 Ford Explorer driven by Nicholas Schnepper, 21, of Flowery Branch.

Authorities say Lopez was making a U-turn just before noon on Buford Highway near Enterprise Drive when his Mirage was hit in the passenger side door by Schnepper’s Explorer.

Schnepper is charged with vehicular homicide, DUI, possession of marijuana and possession of an open container.

He is currently is being held without bond in the Gwinnett County jail. A date has not been set for his preliminary hearing, at which a judge would decide whether bond will be set.

In a third, unrelated wreck, a 5-year-old girl remains in critical condition at an Augusta burn center following a fiery crash Wednesday in northeastern Forsyth County. Misa Brass, who was a passenger in her father’s Chevrolet Geo Tracker, was flown to the Joseph Still Burn Center after the vehicle was rear-ended at about 8 p.m. Wednesday at Dawsonville Highway (Ga. 53) and Dogwood Path.

The car burst into flames following the collision, and the child suffered burns over nearly 40 percent of her body, including third-degree burns over 28 percent, said Forsyth County Sheriff’s Capt. Frank Huggins.

Reached by phone Friday at the Augusta hospital, the family declined to comment.

Beth Frits, a spokeswoman for the burn center, said most of the hospital’s patients have surgery once their condition becomes stable.

"Surgery is typical because you have to remove debris from the burned skin to create a clean wound," she said.

Sheriff’s officials have charged 21-year-old Elezar Alvarez of Cumming with felony hit and run, reckless driving, serious injury by vehicle, following too close and driving with a suspended license. Alvarez was released from jail Thursday after posting a $9,735 bond.

Investigators have said his driver’s license had been suspended due to a previous DUI conviction and he had only a permit to drive to and from work. He was violating that permit at the time.



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