Ex-trooper fired after wreck that killed teens wins city council seat

The mayor of Buchanan says the city's hands are tied despite the tragedy.

The former Georgia State Patrol trooper who was fired following a crash that killed two Paulding County teenagers now has a new title: City councilman.

With 72 votes, Anthony J. Scott was elected to the Buchanan City Council in last week’s election. And the mayor of the small Haralson County city appointed Scott, the top vote-getter, to fill a current vacancy on the council immediately, Channel 2 Action News reported.

“We understand there are emotions at play here, absolutely, but we’ve got to obey the law,” Mayor Chase Croft said.

On Oct. 2, Scott, 26, was fired after investigators determined he was driving 91 mph five seconds before the fatal crash, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported. Scott was northbound on U.S. 27 in Carroll County and had slowed to 68 mph when he struck a 2005 Nissan Sentra attempting a left turn onto Holly Springs Road on Sept. 26, investigators said. The posted speed limit in the area is 55 mph.

Four teenagers were inside the Nissan, which was struck on the right side, and the GSP initially said the Nissan’s driver failed to yield. Additional investigation revealed Scott’s excessive speed was also a contributing factor in the fatal wreck.

Both backseat passengers died at the scene of the crash. Kylie Hope Lindsey, 17, and Isabella Alise Chinchilla, 16, were students at South Paulding High School. Two others — Dillon Lewis Wall, 18, and Benjamin Alan Finken, 17, both of Douglasville — were injured and taken to Grady Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Scott has not been charged in the crash. GSP has said it will turn over its findings from an investigation into the crash to the district attorney.

Scott declined to speak to Channel 2, but his attorney said the former trooper remains devastated and ready to serve.

“He just feels as if he was going to be a good councilmember before the accident,” attorney Max Pilgrim said. “He’ll be a good councilmember afterwards.”

A Buchanan City Council meeting planned Tuesday night was cancelled, but the mayor said it was not related to the recent election.

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