Charges amended in hit-and-run accident that injured pedestrian

Published 4:48 pm Tuesday, December 19, 2017

A Carter County woman accused of striking a pedestrian and then fleeing the scene of the accident appeared in court Monday where the charges against her were amended.

Deputies of the Carter County Sheriff’s Office arrested Kellie Holtsclaw, 31, 158 Spring St., Hampton, on Nov. 26 and charged her with filing a false report and failure to give immediate notice of an accident.

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Holtsclaw made her first appearance on the charges in General Sessions Court on Nov. 27 before Judge Keith Bowers Jr., who appointed the Public Defender’s Office to represent Holtsclaw.

At that time, Bowers set her bond at $1,000 and scheduled her to return to court on Dec. 18. Holtsclaw posted the $1,000 later that same day and was released from the Carter County Detention Center.

Monday marked Holtsclaw’s second appearance in court on the charges.

During the court appearance, the District Attorney’s office asked the court to amend the charge against Holtsclaw to reckless aggravated assault. Bowers granted the request, and the charge was amended.

Holtsclaw is scheduled to return to General Sessions Court on January 26, 2018.

The charges against Holtsclaw stem from an incident on Nov. 27 where around 8 p.m. that evening deputies of the Carter County Sheriff’s Office responded to a home on Hobart Hyder Drive after someone called 911 to report a hit-and-run vehicular assault. When deputies arrived, they spoke with a woman who said she had been walking on Coal Chute Road when a grey vehicle swerved over and hit her. The woman said the driver did not stop after hitting her and was driving at a high speed when the accident happened.

According to court documents, an emergency medical vehicle saw a vehicle matching the description provided by the woman and alerted deputies to the approximate location of the car.

CCSO Deputy Nathaniel Swymer and Lt. Derrick Hamm responded to the area and reported finding the vehicle parked at a home on Centerview Drive.

“Lt. Hamm and I made contact with Ms. Kellie Holtsclaw who stated she had been with her boyfriend Josh Whitehead in the vehicle,” Swymer said, adding Holtsclaw told the officers Whitehead had been driving.

After speaking with Holtsclaw, Swymer said they contacted Whitehead and asked him to come to the home on Centerview Drive to talk to them.

“Upon Mr. Whitehead’s arrival I asked him if he was driving,” Swymer said. “Initially Mr. Whitehead stated he was driving. However, after I detained Mr. Whitehead, he said ‘I want to hear her say I was driving. I would never hit someone in a car and leave.’”

“I then brought Ms. Holtsclaw out to ask who was the driver,” Swymer continued. “Ms. Holtsclaw confessed to being the driver and stated ‘I swear to God I didn’t see anyone. I don’t believe I hit someone.’”