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Driver charged with DUI

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Photo by Mammoth Spring Police Department.
MAMMOTH SPRING -- The Mammoth Spring Police Department investigated two accidents recently.

The first accident occurred Oct. 16 at 5 p.m. on Highway 9 and 8th Street.

Mammoth Spring Police Chief Michael Davis said Harvey Burton, 24, of Thayer was driving a 1988 GMC truck east on Highway 9 when he was struck by another vehicle.

The driver of the other vehicle was Paul Wheat, 44, of West Plains.

Davis said Wheat failed to stop at a stop sign at 8th Street and hit the Burton vehicle.

Wheat was driving a 1995 Ford van.

Davis said Wheat was given a breathalyzer test and charged with driving under the influence. The test showed he had an alcohol content of .23. The legal limit in Arkansas is .08.

He is scheduled to be in Mammoth Spring City Court Nov. 11.

Wheat was not injured in the accident but Davis said Burton was transported to a local doctor by his family.

Burton's vehicle was used for his construction business and a considerable amount of tools and equipment were damaged in the accident including two tool boxes, drills and a 20 ton jack.

Davis said another two-vehicle accident occurred Oct. 10 at 2:20 p.m. on Highway 63 south about six-tenths of a mile from Mammoth Spring. Davis said a 2003 Freightliner tractor trailer truck driven by Corey Griffith, 38, of Topeka, Kan., was traveling south on Highway 63 when he crossed the centerline of the highway near the Riverview Motel and struck a vehicle driven by James Patterson, 39 of Mammoth Spring. Patterson was driving a 1999 Ford F-150.

Davis said Patterson was struck with flying glass from his driver's side mirror and received severe damage to his face from the glass. He was Air Evaced to St. John's Hospital in Springfield where he is still undergoing reconstructive surgery due to his injuries.

A passenger in the Patterson vehicle, Andrea Chaffin, complained of pain and sought her own medical attention.

Griffith, who was not injured in the accident, was charged with driving left of the centerline, failure to control his vehicle, and careless driving.

Griffith is to be in Mammoth Spring City Court Nov. 11.


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