Mace indicted for murder in fatal car accident
by Jack Latta
PRESTONSBURG — A Pike County man was indicted earlier this week on a charge of murder, resulting from a police chase which led to a fatal car accident.
James E. Mace, 22, of Pikeville, was indicted on one count of murder and one count of first-degree assault for his part in a May 15 car accident which claimed the life of 63-year-old Brenda Montgomery.
Mace was the driver of the 2000 Chevrolet Malibu which crashed into Jackson resident Montgomery and her passenger, Elsie Oakley. Montgomery was transported to Highlands Regional Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead by Floyd County Coroner Greg Nelson. Oakley was transported to Highlands Regional Medical Center and then airlifted to Cabell Huntington Hospital.
Police officials said, at the time of the accident, Mace was fleeing from sheriff’s deputies who had spotted him and his passenger, Jonathan Crider, melting copper at an old strip mine. Deputies reported losing track of the vehicle when they reached the main road. Moments later, Mace’s vehicle collided head-on with Montgomery’s on Route 114.
Mace was previously charged with two counts of first-degree wanton endangerment, receiving stolen property, first-degree fleeing or evading police, criminal trespassing, and tampering with physical evidence.
As emergency crews worked to free Mace from the vehicle, they first had to wade through and remove a large quantity of stolen wire that the two had allegedly been stripping on a nearby strip mine.
Mace and Crider were also airlifted to Cabell Huntington.
A pre-trial conference is scheduled for April 18.
Mace is currently serving time in the La Grange State Penitentiary.
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