Infant injured in crash; driver facing charges including fleeing, DUI

Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 10:09 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - A man is facing charges following an incident that ended in a head-on crash that injured a 7-month-old child.

According to the Charleston Police Department, Friday morning officers were called to a gas station along MacCorkle Avenue SE. The call came in as a possible carjacking.

When officers arrived, they located the vehicle described traveling west on MacCorkle Avenue.

Officers attempted a traffic stop, but the driver, later identified as Bruce Hargis, 35, of Huntington, took off in the gray Dodge Journey.

In an attempt to get away from the officer, Hargis turned right onto 35th Street, traveling the wrong direction and eventually hitting another vehicle head-on.

Witnesses of the crash say they’ve never seen anything like this before.

“It was the scariest moment of my life. I never heard so much loud noise and the car like flipping, because I saw it with my own eyes,” Neel Diukar said.

The crash hit a little too close to home for neighbors like Carol Abshire.

“We’re always hearing screeching and brakes and sometimes crashes, but not to this extreme in the 10 years I’ve lived in this building,” Abshire said.

At the scene of the crash, officers located a 7-month-old child in the backseat of the Dodge Journey Hargis was driving.

“I pray to god these people are OK,” Diukar said.

The child was transported to a hospital with a minor head injury.

Police have shut down the 35th bridge following an accident Friday morning.
Police have shut down the 35th bridge following an accident Friday morning.(WSAZ)

Hargis was transported to a hospital and is listed in stable condition.

The driver of the oncoming vehicle involved in the crash was transported to a hospital in stable condition.

Charleston Police confirm Friday that Hargis is being charged with fleeing DUI, DUI with minor, DUI causing injury, one way violation, red light violation, failure to maintain control, destruction of property, seatbelt violation and petit larceny.

After further investigation, officers learned this incident was not a carjacking.

However, a criminal investigation is currently underway with the Mingo County Sheriff’s Department.

According to Mingo deputies, earlier Friday Hargis got into an argument with another man at a home in Mingo County.

Deputies say the fight turned violent, both stabbing one another.

Hargis is then accused of forcing a woman in a car, with a 7-month-old in the backseat, to take him to CAMC in Charleston. Investigators say he faces two counts of kidnapping, one count of malicious wounding and one count of first-degree robbery. More charges are possible, according to deputies.

The other man suffered a stab wound to the leg. His injury is not life-threatening.

Keep checking the WSAZ news app for the latest information.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Police have shut down the 35th bridge following an accident Friday morning.

According to Charleston Police, an approximately 7-month-old child was inside the car at the time of the crash.

The child suffered a minor head injury, officials say.

Drivers are being asked to avoid the area.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

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