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BREAKING NEWS: Callands woman dies in wreck
Saturday night in Martinsville
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Area law enforcement and rescue workers are shown at the scene o fa traffic accident around 11:00 p.m. Saturday on U. S. 58 east in Martinsville. (Bulletin photo by Mike Wray)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

By GINNY WRAY - Bulletin Staff Writer

A Callands woman died Saturday night when a vehicle struck a utility pole on U.S. 58 east, according to the Martinsville Police Department.

Melissa Renee Jackson, 38, of Callands, died at the scene, according to Lt. J.E. Stout, reading from the accident report.

Jackson was the passenger in a 1999 Chrysler 300 M driven by James Benjamin Hairston Jr., 32, of 208 Pine St., Martinsville, the report stated, according to Stout.

According to the report, at 11:08 p.m. Saturday the police were alerted to the accident on East Church Street, 300 feet east of Salmon St. in the city. There, they found the vehicle “pretty much wrapped around the pole, almost at the dead center of the car,” Stout said.

The passenger compartment was forced into the driver’s side of the vehicle, he said, adding that police did not see Jackson when they arrived at the scene.

Both she and Hairston were extricated from the vehicle, he said.

Hairston was taken to Roanoke Memorial Hospital for treatment. Stout said according to the report, his right foot had been wedged under the dashboard on the driver’s side, and he was bleeding from the head and disoriented.

Warrants were issued for the arrest of Hairston on charges of driving under the influence, reckless driving and driving while suspended, Stout said. Hairston had three prior convictions for driving while suspended, Stout added.

Typically, Stout said, warrants are not served until a suspect is released from the hospital.

Traffic was blocked Saturday night due to the accident.

Today, traffic on U.S. 58 is being rerouted while the accident scene is reconstructed as part of the investigation, Stout said.

Martinsville Officer B.D. Peters is the investigating officer.

See this site and Monday’s Martinsville Bulletin for more coverage of this incident.


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