Distracted driving is listed as a contributing factor in a Friday night wreck that claimed the life of a Franklin County Middle School student and injured three other teens.
The single-vehicle wreck happened just after 10 p.m. Friday, March 2, on Ga. 63 near mile marker 1 in Franklin County.
A 2005 Dodge Ram 2500 truck driven by Kaitlyn Hudson, 18, of Toccoa was traveling south on Ga. 63, traveled off the roadway onto the right shoulder, striking a guardrail with its front, according to Georgia State Patrol Post 52 in Hartwell.
After impact, the truck rotated counter-clockwise while overturning, according to GSP. The truck then struck a tree with its rear, causing the vehicle to rotate clockwise after impact.
The truck then struck a tree with its front before coming to an uncontrolled final rest on its wheels, off the roadway, according to GSP.
All occupants of the vehicle were ejected during the wreck, according to GSP. No occupants were wearing seatbelts.
Hudson, who suffered non-fatal injuries, was taken by ambulance to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center, according to GSP.
William Hayden Tompkins, 14, of Royston, a passenger in the truck, died of his injuries. He was pronounced dead at St. Mary’s Sacred Heart Hospital in Lavonia.
Christopher Sutton, 14, of Carnesvile, a passenger in the truck, suffered non-fatal injuries and was taken by ambulance to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center, according to GSP.
Conner Hudson, 13, of Toccoa, a third passenger in the truck, suffered non-fatal injuries and was taken by ambulance to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center, according to GSP.
Tompkins, son of Stephen Joel Tompkins and Tina Grove Tompkins, both of Royston, was an eighth-grade student at Franklin County Middle School. Funeral services for Tompkins will be held at 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, at the chapel of Pruitt Funeral Home in Royston.
The wreck remains under investigation by GSP Post 52 and the Troop B Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team. Charges are pending.
No alcohol or drugs were involved, and speed was not a factor, according to Sgt. Brian Roberts of GSP Post 52. Distracted driving was a factor.