A man who authorities believe to be homeless was killed late Thursday night — just before midnight — when he walked into the path of a tractor trailer on State Street near its intersection with Sinclair Street, said Ware County Sheriff Randy Royal.
Kenneth Kenbley King, 48, whose last known address was on Wisteria Road in Blackshear, was pronounced dead at the scene of the 11:55 p.m. accident by Ware County Coroner Atha Lucas, said Royal.
The driver of the tractor trailer, Timothy Destil Holcomb, 31, of St. Simons, had driven from Screven to deliver a load of forest products to a business location in the Waycross-Ware County Industrial Park and was headed back to Screven when the accident occurred, said Royal.
Driving a 2002 International 9200 series with a trailer, Holcomb was southbound on State Street and had crossed the Kettle Creek Bridge, said Royal. He was heading back up the hill toward Sinclair Street when he saw the man walking in the middle of the southbound lane.
Holcomb told lawmen who investigated the fatal accident that he locked down the brakes and swerved to the left, entering the northbound lane in an effort to avoid striking the man, Royal said, adding that the pedestrian then moved in the same direction and entered the path of the truck.
The semi struck King, which caused him to be pulled underneath the vehicle, Royal said. He said the tractor trailer had slowed with the brakes in lockdown, then skidded to the side of the road, striking a Georgia Power pole, clipping the pole in two pieces and tearing down the connected power lines.
“That area is still without power at this time,” Royal said at 7:15 a.m. today.
“When the deputies arrived, the EMS and fire department were already on scene and they observed a white semi with the trailer at rest,” reported the sheriff.
The EMTs transported the victim to the hospital morgue at 2:34 a.m., Royal said.
Georgia State Patrol Trooper Sherman McLain is the primary accident investigator with Deputy Dylan Howard assisting.