Area Crime

A witness described a Murray County hit and run car crash last week that killed a married couple as like watching "The Fast and the Furious," a movie series featuring high-speed vehicle stunts, and the Georgia State Patrol is searching for the driver that caused the fatal crash.

According to a Georgia State Patrol report, the crash happened Wednesday at 7:17 p.m. on State Route 61 near Hooker Road near Crandall. The witness told a trooper she was traveling north on State Route 61 with a red Ford Mustang on her right side.

The report states the 2007 Mustang was driven by Tommy Nickels, 19, of Crandall. Kristen Nickels, 20, was a passenger in the vehicle. The two were married, according to obituaries.

The witness said a silver sedan "approached the Mustang from the rear and started striking the rear portion of the Mustang. She stated both vehicles then struck one another multiple times after the initial contact. She stated the roadway turned on to a two lane with a continuous center turn lane. She stated the silver sedan moved to the right side of the Mustang and struck his vehicle on the right side causing it to leave the roadway and crash."

The report states the Mustang "traveled off the west side of the roadway, while rotating counterclockwise." It overturned on its passenger's side and struck a tree "with the top of the vehicle's passenger compartment." It finally "landed upright facing north after impact with the tree." Debris from the vehicle struck a nearby mobile home.

The witness said the sedan hit its brakes at a gas station just past the crash site and then fled. She said the driver "appeared to be a white male with short dark hair" and "appeared to be very tall."

The report states multiple video cameras in the area showed what appeared to be a silver Chevrolet Optra, which is a four-door hatchback, traveling north on State Route 61 after the crash. The report states the trooper contacted the witness and asked her to look up that make and model, and she said it looked "exactly" like the vehicle that struck the Mustang.

Both Tommy and Kristen Nickels were pronounced dead at the scene.

Anyone with information on the crash is asked to contact Trooper J. Daniel at Georgia State Patrol Post 43 in Calhoun at (706) 624-1477.

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