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Questions surround accident; local man is killed

Questions surround a single vehicle crash Friday night that left one man dead and another behind bars. John Michael Hemmings, 34, of Clarksville, was pronounced dead at Calhoun-Liberty Hospital from injuries sustained in the accident. Tyrell Ashley Odom, 26, of Clarksville, also in the vehicle, was charged with disorderly intoxication ffor allegedly becoming combative on the scene with law enforcement officers. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, both Hemmings and Odom were in a 2000 GMC Sonoma around 8:30 p.m. The pair were eastbound on Newsome Road in Clarksville, just east of Pine Ridge Road, when they approached a curve, ran off the road, then the driver overcorrected twice. The truck rotated and overturned, but landed back upright. The vehicle then left the area headed westbound on Newsome Road. Authorities were soon called to CR 287-A. Deputy Gary McGee of the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office responded and found Hemmings on the ground outside the passenger door bleeding heavily from his head. Dep. McGee assisted and found he had a weak pulse. Dep. Bobby Sims arrived and applied an automated external defibrillator to Hemmings until EMS reached the scene and took over, performing CPR in the ambulance en route to Calhoun-Liberty Hospital. Meanwhile, Dep. McGee spoke with Odom and noted a strong smell of alcohol on him. Odom reportedly stated several times that he wasn’t driving when the wreck happened. Dep. McGee asked what happened and Odom replied they had wrecked on Newsome Road. When asked how they arrived at CR 287-A, Odom reportedly responded he didn’t know what to do, so he drove there. Florida Highway Patrol investigators arrived and took over the case. They are now trying to determine who was actually behind the wheel at the time of the crash. While working the scene, Odom allegedly became combative with FHP troopers and was arrested for disorderly intoxication. He was booked into the Calhoun County Jail and later released on his own recognizance. The accident is being investigated by Trooper Nathan Russell and Cpl. Roger Boer of the FHP.

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