Teen charged in fatal accident had DUI arrest in Harris County - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Teen charged in fatal accident had DUI arrest in Harris County

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

A small purple cross now sits next to the crash site off County Line Road in Columbus where 16-year-old Hannah Gilmer lost her life.

Police say Clayton Qualls, 17, was under the influence of alcohol when he lost control of his girlfriend's 2006 Toyota Scion. He is now facing several charges, including vehicular homicide.

After Qualls' first court appearance was Monday, News Leader 9 learned this is not the first time the Qualls has been charged for driving under the influence.

Less than two weeks before the accident that claimed the life of Gilmer, reports show Qualls was pulled over in Harris County for DUI under 21. In that report, the deputy states, Qualls tested positive for alcohol after pulling over the teenage driver just off Winfree Road and Highway 208 in Harris County.

The report also shows that Qualls denied driving under the influence and refused to take the state administered test for alcohol. News Leader 9 found out, the deputy confiscated Qualls' license, then gave him a temporary one.

According to Georgia law, Qualls was still able to drive and had 10 days to request a hearing or his license would be suspended.

A friend of Qualls' says he is a good kid who is just having a tough time right now. Qualls' family did not wish to comment on his charges.

Visitation for Gilmer will be Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at McMullen Funeral Home. Her funeral will be Wednesday afternoon at 2 p.m. at Evangel Temple.

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