Driver charged in fatal hit-and-run accident in Lamar Co.

Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM
Published: Mar. 15, 2017 at 10:54 PM CDT|Updated: Feb. 26, 2018 at 11:26 AM CST
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Authorities at the scene of the accident/Photo credit: WDAM
Authorities at the scene of the accident/Photo credit: WDAM
Brandon Chance Eaton/Photo credit: Lamar County Jail
Brandon Chance Eaton/Photo credit: Lamar County Jail

LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The alleged driver has been charged in a hit-and-run accident that killed two Sumrall volunteer firefighters and injured another Wednesday evening.

According to Lamar Co. officials, the man is identified as Brandon Chance Eaton, 31 of Sumrall. Eaton has been charged with hit-and-run and causing death.

Other charges could be added depending on the outcome of the investigation, according to authorities. Eaton will make his initial appearance Thursday morning. According to Lamar Co. Sheriff Danny Rigel, a search warrant for a blood test was done.

The wreck occurred at the intersection of Mississippi 589 and Oloh Road just after 6 p.m. Wednesday evening.

Lamar County Coroner Cody Creel identified the victims as Clinton Alvin Beasley, 80, and Loretta Ann Sykes, 53. Both were pronounced dead at the scene by Creel. The other volunteer firefighter, Shaun Huhn, was transported by ambulance to Forrest General Hospital.

"The cause of the hit-and-run accident is still under investigation at this time," Sumrall Police Chief Chris Dungan said.

According to Dungan, the vehicle was traveling south on Hwy 589 when it veered onto Oloh Road and struck the three firefighters.

Dungan said the vehicle was stopped nearby in a residential area off Scruggs Road.

"The driver was taken into custody and transported to the Lamar County Jail," Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel said.

According to officials, the suspect and the vehicle were found on Magnolia Crossing Road, which is about six miles from the scene of the accident.

County officials confirmed that the parents of Eaton are both volunteer firefighters in the Oloh department, near Sumrall. Oloh volunteers responded to the fatal hit-and-run accident, according to officials.

MOBILE USERS: View photos from the scene here. 

Dungan said the firefighters were helping with traffic flow after an earlier incident involving a dump truck that got tangled in power lines on the opposite side of Hwy 589.

"We just ask for the people to pray for these families that lost these two fine individuals," Lamar County Supervisor Dale Lucus said. "You couldn't ask for better volunteer firefighters, they were always were willing to make any call day or night."

Lamar County Fire Coordinator George Stevens said the incident is a horrible tragedy.

"These are the first two firefighters killed in the line of duty in my career here," Stevens said.

Lucus said all of the supervisors have been notified in the county.

"We just ask for prayers for the entire Lamar County volunteer fire department, they are all family and they are hurting," Lucus said.

The Sumrall Police Department is investigating the accident, along with Mississippi Highway Patrol and the Lamar County Sheriff's Department.

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