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Athens man wanted on homicide charge for February fatal crash

Juan Manuel Romero Garrido in a 2011 jail booking photo

By Joe Johnson

Athens-Clarke County police are searching for a man wanted on a vehicular homicide charge in connection with a fatal crash on Tallassee Road four months ago.

Christopher Scottie Nix, 50, of Jefferson, died at the scene when his 1997 Jeep Wrangler collided head-on with a 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe driven by Juan Manuel Romero Garrido, 40, of Athens.

Fatal crash victim Christopher Scottie Nix

Police said Garrido was traveling northbound on Tallassee Road when his Tahoe crossed the center line between Christa Lane and Ramble Hills Drive.

Garrido and two occupants in Nix’s Jeep -- his wife and 9-year-old son -- had to be extricated from the vehicle and were taken to the hospital in serious condition.

Garrido was taken to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center in serious condition, according to police.

A subsequent investigation resulted in warrants being issued for Garrido on charges of first-degree homicide by vehicle, serious injury by vehicle, DUI, failure to maintain lane and driving without a valid license, police said.

Lt. Shaun Barnett, public information officer for ACCPD, said he did not immediately know when Garrido was released from the hospital or when the arrest warrants were issued.

However, he said police have been unable to locate Garrido and that information about the warrants were made public on Wednesday with the hopes the public can assist in locating him.

Police asked for anyone with information on Garrido’s whereabouts, or any other information related to the fatal crash, to contact Officer First Class James Trotter at or (762)400-7326, or Lt. Jonathan McIlvaine at or (762)400-7089.

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