Teen charged in fatal

By Chris Berendt - cberendt@civitasmedia.com

A Clinton teenager who ran over a woman in the Walmart parking lot Jan. 10 has now been charged in connection with the death of the 58-year-old Warsaw resident, who passed away from her severe injuries four days later.

The Clinton Police Department has charged Alston Burgess, 17, of Reedsford Road, Clinton, with misdemeanor death by vehicle and safe movement violation in the fatal collision that killed Wren Frederick Lane, 58. According to police, she was struck by a 2005 Chevrolet truck that Burgess was driving and subsequently pinned beneath the vehicle.

She died Jan. 14 at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill.

Police released information on the wreck Thursday, noting that Burgess was turning left in the parking lot from the last lane near Overland Road traveling east, before turning back across the front of Walmart heading back toward Sampson Crossing, near the Garden Center.

“Charges allege that Mr. Burgess failed to see before turning in the parking lot and failed to see or warn pedestrians of his intended movement and this action resulted in a collision which caused the death of Wren Lane,” a police statement read.

Clinton Police Sgt. Adrian Mathews was the investigating officer in the wreck, which occurred at 11:14 a.m. that Sunday.

At the time Burgess made the turn, Lane was making her way across the pedestrian walkway near the Garden Center with her husband, Kenneth Earl Lane, their shopping cart in tow.

“They were walking across the crosswalk when she was struck,” Capt. Donald Edwards said following the accident. “Her husband was walking with her and was in front of the shopping cart pulling it and she was behind it, pushing it. She was hit by the driver’s side and ended up under the vehicle.”

It is believed that driver inattention was the primary factor in the wreck, the captain noted. The department’s accident reconstruction team investigated the fatal collision. Clinton Police officials thanked Walmart employees and shoppers for their assistance.

“While there were no reported witnesses to the wreck,” the police statement read, “Walmart employees and patrons responded quickly and tried to assist Lane until emergency personnel arrived.”

Burgess has been given a court date of March 14 in Sampson County District Court, Clinton. There was reportedly no bond given and no mugshot taken of Burgess, as he was issued a traffic summons to appear in court that does not require an appearance before a magistrate.

Reach Managing Editor Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

By Chris Berendt


Reach Managing Editor Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

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