About 8:20 pm Saturday night, E-911 received a call from someone saying, “I’m driving a Budget rental truck. A guy in a New Silver Chevy Silverado just hit me at 4th and Main St and ran off. I chased him until the 45 south exit on the 82 Bypass, but I lost him.” The budget driver then came back to Riverhill Chevron to meet Officer Jesse Roberson to file a report.
Shortly following this, a call came in from a civillian on the Bypass. According to the caller, they had just seen a Silver Chevy Truck wreck on the bypass, just west of the 45 south exit.”
Rescue teams and Highway patrol responded to the wreck. [Highway patrol, emergency crews and myself all drove right past the truck at first. This meant we had to go nearly all the way to the Airport exit to find a turnabout to turn around. – JD] By the time crews found the truck, the driver was nowhere to be found. They did however, find his driver’s license, work ID and a hard hat.
At the scene, it was obvious that the driver, Michael Holloway, lost control of his truck (presumably at a high speed) and slid off the north side of the highway, through a deep, muddy ditch and ended up on the North Frontage Road, snapping fenceposts off at the ground as he passed. Instead of driving away on the Frontage Road, Holloway tried to drive back across the ditch to the Bypass. After a few tries, the truck ended up buried axle-deep in mud and couldn’t move.
At this point, Holloway rolled up his windows, gathered the broken pieces of his truck (throwing them in the back floorboard) and left his truck (unlocked) and walked away from the wreck.
A few minutes later, another call came into E-911 that a driver saw a man walking along the East bound lanes of Highway 82 towards Plymouth Bluff, holding a beer.
By the time Deputies Eric Granderson and Clint Sims found Holloway, he had made his way to the North Frontage Road, almost to the Sprint Mart at Plymouth Bluff. They picked him up and held him for the Highway Patrol. They decided to take him to the Sprint Mart, where they would have more light to perform field sobriety tests, should it be necessary.
After a few minutes of waiting, the Highway Patrol officer requested that Holloway be brought back to the scene of the wreck.
[When Holloway was pulled out of the Sheriff’s car to be transferred to Highway Patrol car, I took his picture and he asked (to no one in particular) “Who’s that guy?” – JD]
An obviously drunk Holloway tried to reason with the officers that, “I’m not drunk. I’m tired. I work 60 hours a week.”
Holloway was charged with Driving Under a Suspended License, No Insurance, Leaving the Scene of an Accidents and DUI (2nd Offense).
[While I was out with the officers on North Frontage Rd, I lost my phone. I looked for it in my truck when the officers stopped at Sprint Mart and when we got back to the site of the wreck. After I left the wreck, I went back to the Frontage Road and started searching for my phone. Using my flashlight (which was dying and barely helpful), I combed through the grass on the side of the road for half an hour. I finally found the phone, inches from my tire. I nearly ran over it when I went back to search. – JD]