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Charges Dismissed in 2020 Vehicular Accident on FJ Torras Causeway in Glynn County

November 14, 2022

Today, the District Attorney’s Office for the Brunswick Judicial Circuit announced the dismissal of various criminal charges, including felony Homicide by Vehicle charge, against Connie Calhoun, 48, of Brunswick, relating to the death of Joseph Wrice, Sr., 62, of Brunswick, on July 30, 2020. In addition to the Homicide by Vehicle in the First Degree charge, Calhoun was initially charged with Hit and Run, Failure of Driver to Stop at or Return to the Scene of an Accident, Reckless Driving, Following Too Closely, Improper Passing on the Right, Speeding and Failure to Maintain Lane.

The charges stem from a vehicular accident that occurred on July 30, 2020, at approximately 7:43 a.m., when a vehicle operated by Calhoun, was driving east on a sidewalk along the FJ Torras Causeway at a high rate of speed. The vehicle first struck the passenger side of a Hyundai Sonata, and left the scene without stopping. As Calhoun continued east on the causeway, her vehicle then hit the rear of a Chevy Silverado, driven by Wrice. Due to this collision, Wrice lost control, left the roadway on the south shoulder and struck a tree. After impact, Calhoun lost control of her vehicle and traveled onto the south shoulder and struck a palm tree before coming to a final rest. Wrice died at the scene.

The accident was investigated by the Georgia State Patrol Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team, and Calhoun was arrested in August 2020. Follow-up investigation, which included interviews, review of medical records and a consultation with a board-certified neurologist who is treating Calhoun, has determined that Calhoun’s manner of driving was the result of an undiagnosed medical condition, specifically a seizure disorder, which was discovered in the months after the accident. Medical testing and law enforcement observation at the time of the accident confirmed that Calhoun was not impaired by drugs or alcohol.

In deciding to dismiss the charges against Calhoun, District Attorney Keith Higgins stated, “It is the burden of the state in any prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused acted with criminal intent. In this case, the accused was suffering from an undiagnosed medical condition at the time of the accident. Calhoun’s medical condition shows that her manner of driving was not due to any criminal intent. While the death of Mr. Wrice is especially tragic, the evidence does not permit a criminal prosecution of Calhoun.”

Members of the media with further questions may contact the Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office at 912-554-7200.