Truck driver in Alabama crash didn’t know he hit vehicle


A friend of J.J. Marino expresses sorrow while listening to fellow friends give testimonies at the candlelight vigil held in Marino’s honor on April 2, 2013 at his former residence. Photo by Jacob Byk.

Leighann McGivern

According to the crash report for the accident that killed Kent State student JJ Marino and injured four other Kent State students, John Purifoy, the driver of the truck that hit the students’ vehicle, said he was unaware he had ever made contact with their car. Officials in the Autauga County district attorney’s office said they were unaware whether charges had been filed against Purifoy at this time.

The accident report said both vehicles were traveling north on I-65 in Alabama, when traffic suddenly slowed. Purifoy’s truck, which was traveling behind the students’ vehicle, left the road to avoid running into the rear of their car. When Purifoy did so, the truck’s trailer jack-knifed and struck the students’ vehicle in the rear, causing it to spin out of control. The car overturned one and three quarter times and came to rest on its side. Purifoy continued northbound and pulled off the interstate at the 238 exit after being contacted by his company. The report also showed the students’ vehicle was totaled in the accident.

Contact Leighann McGivern at [email protected].