By Joe Johnson
An Athens woman was arrested this week for vehicular homicide in connection with a two-vehicle collision in March 2020 in which one of her passengers was killed.
According to an Athens-Clarke County police accident report, a 2001 Nissan Maxima driven by Jamie Bee Whitlock was southbound on U.S. Highway 29 North when it made a U-turn, failing to yield to a northbound 2006 Kia Sorento being driven by a 61-year-old Athens man.
The Kia struck the Nissan in the passenger side, police said.
A passenger in the Nissan, Willie James Butts, 49, of Burkland Drive, was transported to the hospital where he later died, according to the report.
Neither Whitlock nor the Kia driver were injured.
Another of Whitlock’s passengers, 33-year-old Catalpa Court resident April Campbell, was hospitalized with suffered a broken arm and collapsed lung, police said.
At the time of the accident, the driver of the Nissan was identified as 66-year-old Lucy Mae Whitlock of Hull.
“Investigators later determined that Lucy Whitlock was not the correct name and the driver was actually Jamie Whitlock,” Athens-Clarke County police Public Information Officer Lt. Shaun Barnett said.
Lucy Whitlock was at the scene, he said, but Jamie Whitlock left prior to the arrival of officers.
Jamie Whitlock, 42, of Smokey Road, was booked into the Clarke County Jail early Monday morning on warrants charging her with one count of first-degree homicide by vehicle and two counts of hit and run resulting in serious injury or death, according to the jail’s website.
The website indicated that she was set free later that afternoon on an unsecured judicial release, according to the jail’s website.