Two killed on HC roadways

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 12, 2004

A Hertford County High School three-sport athlete and a seven-year-old Harrellsville child tragically lost their lives over the weekend in separate accidents.

Jeremiah Sandusky, 7, was killed after the bicycle he was riding on Friday afternoon was struck by a vehicle traveling on the Swains Mill Road (SR 1441) near Harrellsville.

Less than 34 hours later, Lecky Winborne Jr. of Ahoskie lost his life in a single-vehicle crash on the Jernigan Swamp Road (SR 1101) just south of Ahoskie. Winborne, after allegedly failing to stop at a stop sign, was being pursued by an Ahoskie Police officer at the time of the accident.

North Carolina State Highway Patrol Trooper J.D. Noble investigated the Harrellsville accident, which occurred at 4:01 p.m. on July 9. In his report, Noble said that Betty Freeman of Harrellsville was operating a 1997 Pontiac passenger car west on Swains Mill Road when, apparently, Sandusky entered the roadway, on his bicycle, from a private driveway. Freeman was unable to stop her vehicle in time and struck the youngster.

No charges were filed against Freeman.

Winborne – a rising HCHS senior who competes in basketball, indoor track and cross country – died as a result of injuries sustained from a 1:55 a.m. crash on Sunday.

NCHP Trooper M.W. Warren stated in his report that Winborne, 18 of Newsome Grove Road, was allegedly traveling at a high rate of speed on the Jernigan Swamp Road while being pursued by an Ahoskie Police officer. Warren estimated the speed of Winborne’s 1994 Nissan at 90 mph.

Traveling south, Winborne lost control of his vehicle, according to Warren’s report, and ran off the left side of the road. There, the vehicle struck a culvert at a private driveway, causing the vehicle to overturn. Winborne was ejected from the vehicle prior to the car coming to a rest on its roof near another private driveway.

When contacted on Monday morning, HCHS Athletic Director Charles Simmons, who coaches Winborne in basketball, said he was stunned when he heard the news of his player’s death.

&uot;I don’t know what transpired in Ahoskie with the stop sign incident, but that’s so unlike Lecky,&uot; said Simmons. &uot;You’re not going to meet a nicer kid. He was just a great young man to be around. I feel so bad for his family.&uot;

The weekend fatalities bring the number to 19 of those killed on Roanoke-Chowan area roadways since Jan. 1. The three most recent deaths have come within nine days of each other, all in Hertford County.