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Driver charged for December fatal hit-and-run

POSTED: May 23, 2013 8:59 p.m.
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Daniel Christopher Edwards

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A Port Wentworth man is in jail on charges that he caused a fatal hit-and-run accident in December.


Daniel Christopher Edwards, 27, was charged with vehicular homicide and failure to stop and render aid. The Georgia State Patrol issued a warrant this week for Edwards’ arrest, and he turned himself in to the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday night.


Bond was denied Wednesday in magistrate court, and Edwards was bound over to superior court. He is being held in the Effingham County Jail.


Edwards is charged in the death of Mitchell Johnson, 47. Johnson was riding a bicycle on Hodgeville Road near Forest Haven Road on Dec. 9 when he was hit from behind by a car, according to the ECSO.


A driver passing by on Hodgeville Road noticed the mangled bicycle and Johnson lying on the side of the road, and called 911.


Johnson was taken to Memorial University Medical Center with serious injuries. He died Feb. 1.


Edwards met with investigators on Dec. 10 and said he had hit something while driving on Hodgeville Road the night before. His vehicle was taken as evidence by the Georgia State Patrol.


“He told us he had been driving down that road and he thought he hit a deer,” said ECSO spokesman Detective David Ehsanipoor. “His defense was he did not see what he hit, and he continued on.”


However, investigators doubted Edwards’ story from the start. Johnson’s bicycle had flashing lights to help drivers see it, Ehsanipoor said, and the damage to the car and the bike was considerable.


“It was definitely suspicious,” Ehsanipoor said. “Due to the damage to the bicycle and the injuries to the bicyclist, we think he would’ve seen what happened and stopped to render aid.”

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