A driver sped away from an off-duty officer in the wrong direction on I-675 South and crashed into three other vehicles, leaving one person dead Wednesday morning.

The wreck, near the Forest Parkway exit in Ellenwood, left mangled vehicles and debris scattered across all three lanes, including a wheel that landed in the grass next to a teddy bear.

Clayton police said an officer was on his way home, heading south on I-675 around 6:30 a.m., when he saw a vehicle stopped in the grassy median. It appeared the driver had been traveling north and left the road. When the officer approached, he saw the driver “passed out behind the wheel,” police said.

The officer then knocked on the window and woke the driver, who “appeared to be incoherent with glassy eyes and sweating.”

The driver was asked multiple times to open the door, but instead sped off in the wrong direction and quickly out of sight, according to police. The officer got back into his patrol car and came upon the wreckage a mile later.

The driver he encountered had crashed into three other vehicles. Another driver was killed, according to police, and has yet to be identified.

Officials said it is unclear if the fleeing driver was impaired or experiencing a medical emergency. No other details were released about the crash, including the condition of the alleged wrong-way driver or the survivors in the other vehicles.

The front end of a sedan was crushed, as was an SUV that also sustained severe damage to its side.

— Please return to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for updates.

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