Local News

Child Killed in Durham Accident

Posted February 27, 1997 12:00 a.m. EST

— The driver of a car involved in a fatal accident Thursday in Durham was charged Friday with second-degree murder.

Timothy Earl Blackwell, 36, already faced charges of driving while intoxicated, driving with a revoked license, driving left of center, driving with an open container and possession of drug paraphernalia, in connection with the Thursday morning crash.

Killed was 4-year-old Megan Dail. Authorities say a pickup truck driven by Blackwell crossed the center line and hit two cars, including the Dail's minivan, shortly after 11 a.m. Thursday.

Sherry Dail and her husband, Gregory, were driving separate family vehicles when they both were hit by the pickup. The truck first side-swiped Mrs. Dail's car, then it slammed into the van carrying her family.

Witnesses said Blackwell tried to drive away from the scene, even though his pickup's front end was extensively damaged.

Megan Dail had been riding with her father and two younger brothers, Austin, 2, and Joshua, 1, in the van. Megan and her brothers were belted into proper safety seats.

The boys were reported in stable condition at a local hospital; the parents were treated and released.

Blackwell's driving record is pages long. According to driving records obtained by WRAL-TV5, Blackwell has been charged five times in Durham County with DWI, and he has been charged 21 times with driving with a revoked license. In September 1996, he was convicted of habitual impaired driving and heroin possession, and sentenced to 60 days in jail and three years' probation. His license was permanently revoked in 1989.

The DMV says the pickup truck involved in the accident was not registered to Blackwell, but to a relative named Randy Blackwell. Randy Blackwell's license had been suspended since 1984.

In North Carolina you can own, register and have a vehicle inspected without having a driver's license.