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Teen ejected from vehicle in Riverdale crash

By Linda Looney-Bond

lbond@news-daily.com

An 18-year-old male was taken to Southern Regional Medical Center with life-threatening injuries, Friday, following an automobile crash in Riverdale, Clayton County Police said.

The injured man was a passenger in a Toyota Corolla, and was ejected from the vehicle during the crash, said Clayton County Police Lt. Tina Daniel.

The crash occurred around 3:30 p.m., on East Fayetteville Road at Evans Drive, according to Daniel.

Authorities did not immediately release the names of the people involved in the crash.

"The driver of the Toyota Corolla -- according to witnesses -- went to the stop sign, slowed down, but didn't make a complete stop, causing the collision," Daniel said.

The Toyota collided with a Nissan, she said.

"The driver of the Toyota Corolla was the one who was at fault," said Daniel. "As of right now, [he is] just being charged with a stop-sign violation. Additional charges may be pending, based on the investigation."

Daniel said other persons involved in the crash reported minor injuries.

She said the man who was ejected from the Toyota was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash.

"Lifeflight was called, and en route when the 18-year-old [ejected passenger] went into cardiac arrest," Daniel said, "and because of that, they canceled Lifeflight, and he was transported by ground to Southern Regional."

In a separate incident, a Tennessee man who initially survived an early morning crash on I-75 Thursday, has died, according to police.

Kelly Samuel Hodges, 45, of New Market, Tenn., died at Grady Memorial Hospital early Friday morning, according to Daniel. "He was in a coma ... so he never recovered," Daniel said.

Hodges was one of two people who were ejected from a 2006 Chevrolet Silverado truck, according to a Clayton County Police incident report.

The other man who was ejected from the truck, James Darrell Hickman, 51, of Knoxville, Tenn., was pronounced dead at the scene, Daniel said.

The crash occurred around 4 a.m., Thursday, about 1.2 miles south of the Forest Parkway exit, the police report states.

According to the report, the Chevy was traveling southbound when it hit a guard rail, then hit the rear of a tractor trailer, left the roadway and became airborne, striking several trees before landing.

Daniel said police were not able to determine which of the two men in the Chevy truck was the driver, based on the way they were ejected from the vehicle.

"It doesn't appear that they had their seatbelts on," Daniel said.

The driver of the tractor trailer, Danny William Eugen Cadle, of Rome, Ga., suffered minor injuries, police said.

In the incident report, police said Cadle described how the crash occurred.

"Driver # 2 [Cadle] stated that he observed vehicle headlights approaching his vehicle from the rear," the police report states.

"Driver # 2 stated that he observed the vehicle change lanes behind his vehicle, and strike the guard rail. Driver # 2 stated that he observed vehicle # 1 [Chevy truck] leave the guard rail, and strike his trailer on the right," the police report states.