On Tuesday January 3, 2023 a motor vehicle collision occurred in the intersection of North Main Street and McDowell High Drive involving two vehicles. Preliminary investigation at this point has shown that a 2014 Ford Truck, occupied by two juveniles, one legally licensed 16yoa and his passenger 15yoa, were leaving McDowell High School. According to numerous witnesses, the truck had a green light and was attempting to make a left turn from McDowell High Drive onto North Main Street. It was at this point when a 2006 Ford SUV driven by Brandon Pierce Love 32yoa of Kathy Street in Marion, was traveling South on Main Street. Love did not stop for the red light in his direction and traveled into the intersection where the two vehicles collided. Also inside. Love’s vehicle in the rear seats were two juveniles ages 8yoa and бyoa.
It appears at this time through the investigation that none of the occupants in either vehicle, including the drivers were wearing seatbelts. When the collision occurred, both the driver and the passenger of the Ford Truck were ejected out of the passenger side door. After the ejection, both of those occupants came to rest in the grass on the shoulder of the road beside First Citizens Bank. After the collision the SUV traveled into the oncoming lanes and back into his lane of travel before coming to rest on the shoulder near Bojangles.
McDowell County EMS transported a total of five patients to Mission Hospital in Asheville. Numerous injuries were sustained by occupants in both vehicles. At the time of this release, all but two of the individuals still remain at Mission Hospital in Asheville receiving care. One of the juveniles in the rear seat of the SUV was the most critically injured in the crash. That individual has undergone surgery and is in critical condition today.
This investigation by the Marion Police Department is still ongoing. No charges have been filed at this point, but are expected as the investigation is concluded. Our agency would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone involved including any witnesses or bystanders that rendered aid to those injured prior to emergency personnel arrival. We would also like to take this opportunity in the wake of this severe crash to remind ALL occupants to please wear seatbelts when inside of a vehicle.
Authority: Chief Allen Lawrence