Driver in April fatal Toll 49 wreck charged with intoxicated manslaughter

SMITH COUNTY - The driver who caused a fatal wreck on Toll 49 in April is in the Smith County Jail on two counts of intoxicated manslaughter.

The accident happened around 10:30 p.m. on April 12. According to the TxDOT crash report, 56-year-old Annette Burkhart was stopped on the far right edge of the pavement in the southbound lane of Toll 49 due to a flat tire, and 62-year-old Gary McCrary had stopped behind her to help, activating his hazard lights.

They were working to change the flat tire when Jessica Vass, 35, rear-ended McCrary's pickup, which then rear-ended Burkhart's Charger. Both vehicles then crashed into McCrary and Burkhart. McCrary was pronounced dead at the scene and Burkhart died from her injures at a local hospital.

Vass' vehicle rolled and came to rest in the middle of the Toll road. She was treated at the hospital and released.

The investigation shows shows that alcohol and speed factored into the fatal wreck. Vass had a BAC of .148, according to the report.

Vass was charged with two counts of intoxicated manslaughter and is in the Smith County Jail on bonds totalling $100,000.

© 2017 KYTX-TV


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