A motorcyclist assisting in a funeral procession was killed early Sunday on Friendship Road in South Hall County.
The other driver, Michael Jesperson, 63, of Lawrenceville, is charged with DUI and vehicular homicide.
Jesperson was driving east in the left-turn lane on Friendship Road/Ga. 347 when he tried to turn left into a private driveway, according to the Georgia State Patrol. He turned his Ford Ranger in front of William Frey, who was traveling west on Friendship Road.
Frey, 70, of Duluth, was thrown from his motorcycle, according to the state patrol. Jespersen was not injured.
Frey was working for a company that assists in funeral processions and had flashing white lights and a siren on his motorcycle, Braselton Police Chief Terry Esco said.
Brandon Crouse was traveling in the opposite direction of the procession and saw the accident in his rearview mirror and ran toward Frey to help him.
“I was leaving Taco Bell and I was just commenting to my wife, ‘Wow, this is a really long funeral procession,’” Crouse said Monday. “I saw the motorcycle officer coming down the hill with his lights and sirens on. Curiosity makes you look in the rearview mirror to see what’s going on.
“That’s when I saw the truck moving into his lane, and he broadsided it. (The truck) was carrying a glass rack in the back. All I saw was (Frey) go through that, and he ended up in the street. It was horrible.”
Crouse said he stayed with Frey until a nurse and two police officers arrived. The driver was taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville but succumbed to his injuries.