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Two elderly pedestrians injured, driver charged in parking lot collision

STAFF REPORT • Updated Jul 8, 2018 at 1:54 PM

KINGSPORT — On Saturday at approximately 3 p.m., Kingsport Police Patrol Officers responded to a motor vehicle collision that had occurred in the parking lot of a shopping center, located in the 4300 block of Fort Henry Drive, in the Colonial Heights area.

Because of the severity of injuries sustained by two elderly pedestrians, the KPD Traffic Unit was called to the scene. Their subsequent investigation revealed the following, according to a police report:

A 2004 Chevrolet Silverado pickup, driven by Skylar Hawk Sexton, 24, 135 Dogwood Village Road, Jonesborough, was traveling along Fort Henry Drive and made a right turn into the shopping center parking lot. Sexton is believed to have been unfamiliar with the area and was following directions given by the GPS on his cellphone. As he entered the parking lot, he became confused, jumped a curb, lost control and depressed the gas pedal instead of the brake pedal, the report continued.

Sexton’s pickup first struck a 2001 Jeep Wrangler that was legally parked and unoccupied. His vehicle continued across the parking lot, jumped two more curbs and struck a second vehicle, a 2004 Kia Sorrento that was legally parked and unoccupied, knocking it into the H&R Block business at 4307 Fort Henry Drive. Two elderly pedestrians, an 80-year-old male and 88-year-old female who had been standing next to the Kia, were struck and seriously injured in the process, the report continued.

Sexton’s vehicle continued on and struck a third vehicle, a 2007 Chevrolet Tahoe that was legally parked and unoccupied before finally coming to a stop, the report continued.

The two pedestrians were transported by Sullivan County EMS to an area medical facility for emergency medical treatment and were hospitalized. The man appeared to have sustained a broken hip while the woman is believed to have sustained a head injury.

After further investigation, to include crash reconstruction analysis, field sobriety testing, and interviews, Sexton was arrested and charged with two counts of reckless aggravated assault; driving under the influence; and failure to maintain control of a motor vehicle. He was booked into the Kingsport City Jail and later transferred to the Sullivan County Jail in Blountville. He was released after posting a $31,000 bond.