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Police: Forsyth man intentionally caused fatal wreck

POSTED: January 24, 2014 12:29 a.m.

Gwinnett County police say they believe a Forsyth County man intentionally crashed his van into vehicles stopped at a traffic light.

The Jan. 16 wreck killed a Norcross woman and critically injured the driver police say they believe to be at fault, Jacob Nicholson, 22, of Northeast Forsyth with a Gainesville address.

Investigators are still trying to determine why he may have intentionally run into the vehicles.

“That part is still under investigation,” police spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith said. “We don’t think he was targeting a particular person, but he definitely intended to crash into other vehicles.”

Nicholson’s family declined to comment shortly after the wreck.

Nicholson was driving about 7:30 a.m. south on Singleton Road “at a high rate of speed,” according to police.

He swerved into oncoming traffic at Singleton Road’s intersection with Jimmy Carter Boulevard and hit six vehicles stopped at a traffic light on the other side of Singleton, which is South Norcross Tucker Road at that point, police spokesman Cpl. Edwin Ritter said.

Nicholson is recovering at Gwinnett Medical Center and now faces charges including felony murder and 10 counts of aggravated assault in addition to earlier charges of reckless driving, speeding, driving on the wrong side of the road, no seat belt and expired driver’s license. He had earlier been facing vehicular homicide in the first degree, a lesser charge than felony murder.

Nicholson will be officially served the arrest warrants when he’s released from the hospital.

The wreck killed Cynthia Thornton, 59, and also injured Stephen Merritt, 42, of Tucker. Four other drivers were involved but not injured.

Police said Nicholson’s van rolled a couple of times before he was ejected.


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