Crash kills teen on birthday - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Crash kills teen on birthday

William Cope William Cope
Keith Croft Keith Croft
COOK CO., GA (WALB) -

Members of Georgia State Patrol's Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team returned to the scene of the crash on Roundtree McCranie Rd. Monday morning to forensically map the area in hopes of getting a more specific idea of what happened Sunday night when a white 1998 Ford Mustang driven by 18 year old Dequaveus Jackson, lost control, went off the road, and flipped, killing 15 year old Gage Raper.

"[He] was killed after he was ejected and right now everything is still in it's preliminary stages," said SCRT Investigator Snr. Trooper William Cope. Raper had just celebrated his 16th birthday earlier in the day.

The Mustang, which was being held in a GSP evidence storage facility as of Monday, was a convertible and had it's top down at the time of the crash. Troopers said Raper was not wearing his seat belt.

Monday morning, green flags were scattered all across the roadway for about 50 yards leading up to the spot where the Mustang came to rest, marking the scene where the Mustang came around the curve too fast and lost control. And, the tire marks could still be seen in the dirt.

At Cook County High School Monday, Principal Keith Croft said the news was tough on some students. "Kids are emotional, as we all are," Croft emphasized. "It hits home sometimes, so yes, we've dealt with those as best we can...also, we have to realize that there were two other students involved in the accident and we ask for people to continue to pray for them and their families."

The driver, 18 year old Dequaveus Jackson, and another passenger, 15 year old Alorhalywn Thacker, were both taken to hospitals for treatment, but had been released as of Monday and charges were pending the outcome of the investigation.

As of Monday afternoon, a vigil was scheduled for 7:30 Monday night at the high school's football stadium.

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