Woman charged with hitting, killing Smyrna man with car

A woman accused of hitting and killing a 66-year-old Smyrna man in March has been charged with homicide by vehicle and reckless driving.

The investigation is ongoing, but police believe Lameeka Shatia Burden, 34, of East Point, was driving distracted. Her vehicle, a 2016 Hyundai Elantra, struck Gerald Staton.

Police haven’t released what they think distracted her.

“We have our suspicions, but since it’s still an active investigation, we’re not prepared to say that definitively at this time,” Smyrna police Sgt. Louis Defense told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Burden was leaving Carriage House Apartments on Windy Hill Road when she hit Staton in the parking lot, police said.

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A warrant obtained by Channel 2 Action News said Burden’s car hit Staton on his back left leg, causing the back of his head to hit the windshield before he fell to the pavement and soon died.

Burden told police that when she was coming around the corner of the building, her view was obstructed by another car. At first, thinking she had hit a dog, Burden got out of her car and then saw Staton, who was bleeding from the head. 

According to the police report, Burden was “extremely emotional” and “very uncooperative” once they arrived on the scene and began the investigation.

Charges were not filed until more than three months after the incident, Channel 2 reported, and more could be filed as the investigation continues.

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