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Man charged with homicide by vehicle
Girl, 5, killed in February crash
Thomas Chapman Childs
Thomas Chapman Childs

A Statesboro man was charged Monday with homicide by vehicle following a six-month investigation into a crash that killed a 5-year-old girl in February.

Thomas Chapman Childs, 20, of Plantation Circle, was charged Monday with homicide by vehicle in the second degree (misdemeanor) and failure to obey a traffic control device. The charges came after completion of an investigation by the Georgia State Patrol Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team, according to GSP reports. Conviction on the charges could lead to a sentence of 12 months in prison plus a $1,000 fine.

According to court records, Childs was charged by the GSP in September 2019 with speeding, DUI/less safe, open container, possession of a fraudulent ID and underage possession of alcohol, reports show.

When the fatal Feb. 12 accident occurred, Childs was traveling on Veteran’s Memorial Parkway around 9:45 a.m. that morning, heading south, when he failed to stop at a red traffic light and “T-boned” a vehicle driven by Melonie White, 35, of Statesboro, according to reports from Georgia State Patrol Post 45 Cpl. Josh Riddle, a member of the SCRT.

A 5-year-old girl in the car was killed, pronounced deceased at the scene, he said. Two other adults and a juvenile boy were in White’s car at the time of the crash. Childs was alone in his vehicle.

Passenger Katherine Key was airlifted to a Savannah hospital. White, the juvenile boy, passenger Destiny Key, 20, and Childs were all transported to East Georgia Regional Medical Center, Riddle said.  

Arrested on Monday, Childs was listed Tuesday as released on bond, according to Bulloch County Jail records.

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