Argument leads to fatal accident on Jefferson St.

by Wes Mayer

A male passenger was fatally injured in a single-vehicle accident in Newnan on Easter Sunday, but no charges are pending against the driver at this time.

Officers with the Newnan Police Department were dispatched to the scene at 3:42 a.m. to find a vehicle had crashed into a utility pole near the bridge on Jefferson Street, said Traffic Sgt. Lane Yearta. The passenger, Michael Lee Pitman, 32, was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver, Pitman’s girlfriend, was also injured, according to authorities. She was conscious when officers arrived, however, and was able to give some details of the accident.

According to driver statements to police, while driving eastbound on Jefferson Street in the left lane, near the intersection of Jefferson Place, Pitman grabbed the steering wheel and jerked it to the right, Yearta said. The vehicle, a 2003 Mitsubishi Galant, then veered and collided with a utility pole on the passenger’s front side of the vehicle – Pitman was not wearing a seat belt and was fatally injured.

Pitman’s girlfriend told officers the two were arguing prior to the accident, Yearta said. Pitman originally called his girlfriend to pick him up. The two got into an argument and, at one point, Pitman asked to get out of the car and began walking. After Pitman’s girlfriend returned to pick him up, he allegedly grabbed the wheel and caused the accident.

The driver was later transported to Atlanta Medical Center, and, according to Yearta, when officers recently checked on her, she was sedated and unable to talk. Yearta said the investigation is ongoing, but no charges are expected.

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