By Joe Johnson
Athens-Clarke County police on Thursday announced they identified the alleged hit-and-run driver who killed a pedestrian the day before on North Avenue.
According to police, 31-year-old Amanda Gerrett was driving a silver SUV Jeep north on North Avenue at about 3:45 p.m. when the vehicle jumped the curb and fatally struck 66-year-old Stephen James Pugh who was walking northbound on the sidewalk.
“Officers searched the area and located an occupied silver Jeep that was potentially involved,” said Lt. Shaun Barnett, ACCPD’s public information officer.
“The vehicle was located on Third Street,” he said. “Contact was not made with the owner and/or driver. This vehicle has not been confirmed as being involved; however, it is a vehicle of interest.”
Subsequently, police said they took out warrants charging Gerrett with first-degree homicide by vehicle, felony hit and run, and failure to maintain lane.
Athens-Clarke County Coroner Sonny Wilson said he was unable to find any next of kin to notify them about Pugh’s death.
He said that both of the homeless man’s parents, who had lived in Brunswick, are deceased.
The coroner said he did not know where Pugh stayed in Athens, but a woman who knew him said he lived in the area of Carr's Hill and often interacted with members of the Oconee Street United Methodist Church.
Anyone with information regarding Gerrett’s whereabouts is asked to contact law enforcement by dialing 911.
The investigation remains ongoing and police asked for anyone with information regarding the crash to contact Senior Police Officer Joey Lewis at 762-400-7169 or firstname.lastname@example.org.